Bhutan State of Environment Report: The Monthly Overview, April 2014

Bhutan will soon start implementing the largest Climate Change Adaptation project in the World funded through the Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF) which is administered by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) with an investment of US $ 11,491,200 (Nu. 712,454,400). .Read more in this April 2014 edition of the Monthly Overview on State of Environment, Bhutan.

ENVIRONMENT

Bhutan will soon start implementing the largest Climate Change Adaptation project in the World. The project, titled - “Addressing the Risks of Climate-induced Disasters through Enhanced National and Local Capacity for Effective Actions” is the second adaptation project in Bhutan funded through the Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF) which is administered by the Global Environment Facility (GEF) with an investment of US $ 11,491,200 (Nu. 712,454,400). The first was the Glacial Lake Outburst Floods (GLOF) mitigation project in Lunana, which was implemented from 2008 to 2013 with UNDP as the implementing agency.

LAND, AGRICULTURE, GRAZING LANDS AND ANIMAL CARE

Farmers of Jigmecholing and Chuzom gewogs in Sarpang of Bhutan, who grew cardamom in small quantity, are now planting it in their dry lands. The government of Japan provided Nu 68M or USD 1.1M in agricultural aid to Bhutan. The aid was given as part of the ‘food security project for underprivileged farmers’ also known as the KR-II grant.

MINING

With 13 households refusing to approve clearance for Kuenphen Norden mine at Khariphu to renew its lease, the mine closed. Following Thimphu dzongkhag’s investigation in to complaints filed by villagers, the Department of Geology and Mines (DGM) suspended its submission of a note for the renewal of the lease to the economic affairs ministry.

DAMS

About 2,500 acres of arable land, which went fallow for want of water is expected to come back to life with renovation of Khamdang irrigation channel, which is nearing completion this month. Public sector hydro-power companies NHPC, SJVN and THDC will ink deals with Bhutan government-owned power companies for implementation of four hydel projects, including 770-MW Chamkharchhu-I under a joint-venture (JV) route, on April 22. The Norwegian government allocated USD 5.7M for Bhtan to conduct pre-feasibility studies of three new hydropower projects, improve energy efficiency and encourage renewable energy use, recently. An inter-governmental agreement was signed between India and Bhutan on development of four hydropower projects.

FORESTS

Within the next four years, about 400,000 saplings would be planted along the Punatsangchhu valleys in Wangduephodrang and Punakha of Bhutan. The forest fire in Bhutan destroyed about 400 acres of forest. Over 10,000 acres of forest was razed by a fire, which started above Rabuna under Phangyul gewog in Wangdue of Bhutan on April 10.

HEALTH AND OCCUPATIONAL HAZARDS

Even as health officials in Bhutan, cope with a rising number of people suffering from multidrug resistant tuberculosis, increasing incidents of extra-pulmonary TB is becoming a major concern.

ENERGY

About 2,800 homes across Bhutan will be using biogas energy source as an alternative to LPG and electricity by 2015. The Bhutan Biogas Project (BBP), which commenced in December 2011, has already connected 1,009 homes of farmers in five southern dzongkhags with biogas plants.

LIVING RESOURCES

In Bhutan, the issue of  biological corridor affecting the progress of the Rinchenthang Township in Nganglam, Samdrupjongkhar was listed as for the Parliament session this month. About 50 percent (over 1,000 acres) of the planned Nu 500M Rinchenthang town falls within the biological corridor that connects Manas national park to Khaling wildlife sanctuary.

 

 

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