Panel uses science to save ChureThe newly formed Rastrapati Chure-Tarai Mades Conservation Development Committee has started incorporating scientific information into the conservation strategies
Chure conservation is facing challenges from the government authorities due to lack of adequate scientific information on Chure such as geological formation, status and damage-need assessment of the minerals and resources available along the region.
Chairperson of the committee Rameswhor Khanal said the panel would immediately work to prepare a master plan that would include robust scientific data on geo-physical state of the Chure region like identification of the vulnerable sites, hazard mapping and existing status of the available natural resources. “The most important feature of the proposed master plan would be study and development of three regions which are interlinked—Chure, Tarai and Madhes in an integrated approach rather than in a fragmented manner,” he added.
According to Khanal, the master plan will incorporate identification of vulnerable zones, assessment of natural resources and minerals, development and implementation of bio-engineering practices to mitigate disaster risks related with floods, landslides and erosion and enhancement of socio-economic status of locals living along the region.
Khanal also hinted at the extension of ban on extraction of resources from Chure hills for an indefinite period while permission to extract and utilise the sediments, including boulders, stones, coarse sand and aggregates deposited along the rivers, could be provided in near future.
“However, the extraction would be made only in appropriate sites considering the environmental conditions,” he added. The government has already announced a ban on extraction and export of sand, boulders, stones and aggregates from Chure districts to the neighbouring country, effective from July 17.
The government had on Monday declared Chure as an environment conservation zone, prohibiting all activities amounting to deforestation, wildlife loss, and excavation of minerals, sand and boulders and formed the five-member committee chaired by Khanal. Other four members, including experts, are yet to be appointed.
According to Dipak Chamalagain, a geologist working in Chure, the existing Chure conservation measures have failed to understand or incorporate science that provides details on fragile geology that is under severe threat due to natural and most importantly from human activities such as deforestation and excessive extraction of resources.