Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Plan for Lumbini development soon

Kathmandu, November 25:
Lumbini, the birthplace of Lord Buddha and one of the four World Heritage Sites of the country, is soon going to have a framework for future plans in the sacred archaeological site soon.
Since the site is now a centre of attraction for religious pilgrims, architectural students and tourism entrepreneurs, the United Nation's Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) is going to come up with a framework based on which all new master plans and other development works will be carried out.
"The drafting of the framework has begun. It is going to stop the government as well as other institutions from making unwanted changes in the site," said Kai Waise, the adviser for drafting the framework for the UNESCO Kathmandu Office.
The Integrated Management Plan (IMP) will define the significance, size and right of authorities concerned from different aspects, the UNESCO adviser further said. More than a single plan, it is a system, process or function of the area, which will be the supreme guideline for Lumbini, once it is endorsed by the cabinet, he said.
Though the focus of the framework is the patch of land measuring 1.92 square metre, in which Lord Buddha was born, the framework will also come up with recommendations for buffer zones and other surrounding development zones in this Integrated Management Plan, in line with recommendations made by the World Heritage Committee to prevent the total de-listing of the site from the World Heritage Site list. "We will also draw certain lines on how existing factories, the proposed construction of the international airport and dams in nearby rivers will or could affect the vulnerability of the site," Waise said.
The government must make sure that development works to be carried out around the site do not affect the site, Waise further said.He said that the plan itself is not a master plan, but a broad and long-term guideline that will govern drawing of new master plans and other initiatives for conservation or development of the the area.
"It is good to hear that Lumbini will have its IMP, finally," said Kosh Prasad Acharya, director-general of the Department of Archaeology (DoA) who was also involved in drafting of the project proposal.
He said that since the DoA is the nodal agency of all World Heritage Sites of Nepal, it is our responsibility to support the process of drafting it.
"Drafting of IMP was the requirement of the World Heritage Committee. And since the master plan of Kenji Tange was only a development plan, a separate plan was needed to draw strict lines for conservation of the sacred garden," Acharya further said.
Published: November 26, 2007 12:00 am On: Nepal

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Chlorine lacking in piped water in Valley: Survey

Kathmandu, October 27:
Piped water distributed in many areas of Kathmandu Valley is lacking in chlorine, according to a survey to be released soon. Both high and low chlorine concentration are harmful for public health.
The Free Residual Chlorine Survey in piped water, conducted in the valley for the past three months, has shown that water in at least 17 out of selected 93 areas contains no chlorine at all, while there is low concentration of chlorine in piped water distributed in many other areas. A total of 120 volunteers from all five municipalities took 1,552 samples to prepare the report, to be published after Tihar.
“The report has shown that piped water distributed in the Valley is not at all suitable for drinking. It shows the poor condition of water and sanitation in our capital,” said Triratna Manandhar, a programme officer at the NGO Forum for Urban Water and Sanitation (NGOFUWS). The survey was conducted by NGOFUWS with supports from UN-HABITAT, as part of Cholera Mitigation Campaign 2007.
The problem of absence of chlorine in piped water has hit the small town of Kirtipur the hardest. Out of the seven points examined there, piped water distributed in four places — Dhusitole, Nagaun, Tyanglaphant, Khasibazar — had no chlorine at all.
In Kathmandu, 11 places out of 57 survey points showed that piped water distributed there is totally lacking in chlorine. The places where water is distributed without chlorine include Ombahal, Chapali, Hyoomata, Jaishideval, Dhokatol, Bauddha Phulbari, Goldhunga Balaju, Maruhiti, Thapathali, In addition, over 75 per cent of the tests in Maru, Jhochhen, Indrachowk, Guchhatole, Yatkhabahal, Milanchowk Kapan showed nil chlorine in those areas.
Out of 12 points in Bhaktapur, severe problem of chlorine deficiency was observed only in Katunje. Lalitpur is relatively less affected. Only in Sundhara, 80 per cent of tests resulted in nil chlorine.
On the contrary, chlorine concentration was found to be high in a number of areas. The areas with high chlorine in Kathmandu are Putalisadak Newplaza, Maharajgunj Chakrapath, Milanchowk Baneshwor and Jhwabahal. In Lalitpur, Nirmalbasti of Satdobato was found to be the only area where the concentration of chlorine was high.
Only nine spots of Kathmandu and two of Kirtipur are blessed with normal concentration of chlorine. The areas include Dhapasi Chauki, Old Baneshowr, Tankeshowr, Wotu, Dallu Awas, Chhetrapati Chowk, Bijeshwwri, Soaltimod and Pepsikola Koreshwor of Kathmandu and Kamalpokhari of Kirtipur. Generally, 0 to 0.2 milligramme of chlorine in one litre of water is considered less, 0.2 to 0.5 mg is considered normal and 0.5 to 1 mg is taken as high concentration. “The WHO has set that 0.2 to 0.5 mg of chlorine in a litre of water is standard. Less than it means that bacteria still live in the water and excessive chlorine in long term may cause cancer to the public,” said Rosha Raut, lab in-charge at the Nepal Environment and Public Health Organisation.
The study was conducted in 56 places in Kathmandu, 11 places in Lalitpur, 12 places in Bhaktapur, seven places in Kirtipur and three places in Thimi.

Published: October 27, 2007 12:00 am On: Kathmandu


Saturday, July 28, 2007

Environment conservation dept in offing

Kathmandu, July 26:
The Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology (MoEST) is going to have a separate department for environment conservation soon.
The MoEST is doing homework to set up a Department of Environment Conservation. A draft concept paper in this regard will soon be forwarded to the chief secretary for final approval. A special team headed by joint secretary Khumraj Punjali has been formed to develop a framework for the department.
“A separate department will give a boost to our environment conservation initiatives,” Punjali told The Himalayan Times.
According to the framework developed so far, the department will mainly have six sections — environmental planning and auditing, pollution control and standard, laboratory and research, communication, law and administration.
As per the framework, the new department will have less than 50 civil servants.
The MoEST believes that the department will be run by staffers of several government offices, who are capable but are lying idle. “So, it is not going to be a big financial liability for the ministry. Nontheless, we will have to assign duties and responsibilities to staffers,” he said.
A government officer said, “The budget will not be a problem for the department as we have not been able to utilise budget allocated for us. Inability to execute projects is the problem.”
Presently, there is only one department — the Department of Hydrology and Meteorology — under the MoEST. This department works in some specific areas that are not directly related to environment conservation.
“The department will be based outside Singha Durbar premises. This way, more and more people will visit us and we will interact with them on various issues,” the official said.

Published: July 27, 2007 12:00 am On: Nepal


Thursday, April 5, 2007

Save Nepal from landmines

The armed coflict has ended in Nepal. But the treat of the imapct is till there. It is known that only Nepal Army has laid over 14,000 landmines in 52 districts during the conflict. And it is not sure h how many by the Maoist army. Now, the war has ended. But anytime, anybody can be victimised due to the unexosed land mines and other impovershed exploxive devises.

Will anybody going to take care? I heard that Denmark and other countries are giving us money. But the experiences have shown us that we are very fast to blow the donation money but slow to work on the field.

Thursday, March 8, 2007

What else can I say now?

Hodiaux estas tiel nomata "Tago de Virinoj". Mi ne scias kial virinoj (ne cxiuj, mi scias) gxuas gxin. Iel, mi diziras sukceson kaj felicxon al virinoj konataj okaze tiu tago.

La partoprenintojde la renkontigxo revenis hieraux vespere el la longa pielvagado. Mi iris al la hotelo por renkonti ilin sed mi estis iom malfrua kaj ili jam iris al siaj cxambroj. Mi povis salutin nur al S-ro Hori.

Narendra, Poshraj kaj Rustam tre eksciite rakontis al la gaja piedvagado kaj mi tre bedauxris ke mi mem ne povis partopreni en gxi. Ili havis ankaux belegajn fotojn ili kaptis dum la piedvagado je negxplenaj montoj. Mi gxojis ke cixuj membroj estis sanaj, felicxaj kaj bone gxuis la vagadon. Nur kelke da ili estis lacaj.

Ili hodiaux matene forveturos al Daman, alia flanko de monto de kie ili vidos panoramon de la Himalajo, kune kun Monto Everesto.

Kaj, mi hodiaux matene povis paroli kun Ursula. Sxi vokis al mia hejmo. Kaj sxi diris ke sxi estas tute sana. Mi estas felicxe ke mi renkontos ilin morgaux vespere. Kaj sabato estos la internacia vespero. Mi devas multon fari.

Monday, March 5, 2007

Environment agencies' integration in offing

Kathmandu, March 4:
The Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology (MoEST) is working to integrate major environment agencies being run under two ministries — the MoEST and the Ministry of Forest and Social Conservation (MoFSC).
The MoEST is going to find out similarities in the handling of three areas of environment – desertification, climate change and biodiversity – so that problems related to implementation as well as duplication will be traced and resolved.
Currently, desertification and climate change are handled by the MoEST, while the MoFSC is handling biodiversity.
“The ministry is going to start a project in two weeks to solve all environment-related confusions at the policy level,” said Batu Krishna Upreti, chief of the Environment Assessment Section at the MoEST.
The National Capacity Needs Self-Assessment for Global Environment Management Project (NCSAP) will identify, confirm or review priority areas for action within the three thematic areas and identify related capacity needs within and across the areas. It further intends to catalyse targeted and coordinated action, and requests for future external funding and assistance. Similarly it also intends to link country action to the boarder national environmental management and sustainable development framework. The Rs 14 million project will be nationally executed and the MoEST will be the National Executing Agency, which will last for one-and-a-half-years.
“It will find synergies among and across these areas to direct actions towards achieving the national goal of sustainable development,” he said.
Upreti further said that the outcome of the project is to identify priorities and needs for capacity building to protect the global environment, taking into account the three global conventions on biodiversity, climate change and desertification.
“For example, we have national action plan on desertification but it alone cannot work, as the subjects are closely related with biodiversity and climate change as well,” he said, adding that such confusions on policy level are going to be cleared through this project.
He further said similar projects are being implemented or are on the way to be implemented, which will be combined in the future.
Published: March 05, 2007 12:00 am On: Kathmandu

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

INGOs plan Bengal tiger census in Nepal

Razen Manandhar
Kathmandu, January 30[2007]:

Various international non-government organisations are making plans to carry out a census of Bengal tigers (Panthera tigris) in Nepal’s national parks.
Recent studies have put the number of the wild cats in Nepal at about 350 to 375.
A tiger survey has been initiated in the Bardia National Park with a focus on the Babai river floodplain. A team of seven park personnel will start monitoring from the Chepang area, the gateway of the Babai, according to the last updated draft of the tiger count plan.
“We are currently working on methods to conduct a survey in the national parks to find out how many tigers are living in the habitat, which is constantly under human threat,” Dr Ghanashyam Gurung, the action country representative of WWF Nepal, told The Himalayan Times.

He expressed the hope that the count will most probably begin this season with support from various other institutions and will last for some six months.

“This is the first time the WWF is initiating such a survey. The past five years of the insurgency have had a marked impact on wildlife population in the Babai river floodplain,” he said.

Gurung added that the WWF will also develop a congregated methodology of counting rhinos. He, however, refused to comment on the financial aspect of the surveys.

The current tiger population estimation is based on various sources and surveys carried out in the past three decades.

However, it has been felt that there is insufficient information on the demographic patterns of the tigers such as population structure, spatial distribution, home-range size, movements, social organisations, age-structure, survival rate, extent for breeding etc, according to a recent outline document for tiger conservation.

Currently, three isolated areas in Nepal remain as tiger habitats. Chitwan occupies the largest area where 75 per cent of the tigers are within protected areas. The other two populations are those in Bardia and Shuklaphanta.

A $ 1 million revised action plan to conserve tigers and their habitat is on the final stage of drafting. It will consolidate various programmes on tigers for the coming five years.

Thursday, January 4, 2007

Koshi river basin to be managed in integrated way{conservation}

Razen Manandhar

Kathmandu, January 3[2007]:

Seventeen districts under the watershed areas of the Koshi river and its tributaries in the eastern Nepal are being integrated into a long-term conservation programme under the name of Koshi River Basin Management (KBRM).

The programme is being envisaged by the Water and Energy Commission Secretariat (WECS) of the
government with technical support from WWF Nepal.

“We will cover all the areas of the eastern Nepal, which are considered important from the point of view of water, wetland, wildlife, vegetation and indigenous culture in one big programme,” said Neera Pradhan, programme manager. This is the first initiative of its kind in the country and the main objective is to explore partnership and formulate a vision for conservation, she said. The districts to be covered are: Sindhupalchowk, Kavre, Dolakha, Ramechhap, Sindhuli, Solukhumbu, Okhaldhunga, Khotang, Udayapur, Sankhuwasabha, Bhojpur, Saptari, Taplejung, Terhathum, Dhankuta, Panchthar, and Sunsari. The programme will bring Sagarmatha National Park, Makalu-Varun National Park,
Kanchanjunga Conservation Area and Koshi Tappu Wildlife Reserve Area under a single umbrella

Pradhan said the formulation of KBRM as a pilot programme was guided by the National Water Plan, a 25-year plan of the government to manage water for all purposes. A joint team of the government and WWF will soon visit selected areas to be covered by the programme and will prepare a strategic paper within a year, she said.

The importance of river basin management, instead of a project-to-project basis, lies in the inherent
interrelation of water and land resources to form a unit. This approach focuses development and management of water, land and related resources to maximise the resultant economic and social welfare in an equitable manner without compromising the sustainability of ecosystem. Executive secretary of the WECS, Ram Krishna Tiwari, said the project will generate necessary information on resources within Koshi river basin to ensure their wise use.

जिगु नुगलय् च्वंम्ह सत्य मोहन

राजेन मानन्धर मनूत गुलि म्वाइ? म्वायेगु धइगु हे सिइत खःसां सिइगु धइगु सुयातं मयः । तर सु गबलय् सिइ धइगु सुनां मसिउ । गुम्हं लाइमखुत धकाः अस्...