World Environment Day (WED) is the United Nations’ principal vehicle to encourage worldwide awareness and action for environment. Over the years it serves as the ‘people’s day’ for doing something positive for environment, starting individual actions into a collective power that generates an exponential positive impact on the planet.
TWA observed the day,5th June 2015, through awareness programs with school children and public.Tibetan Women’s Association, Student for a Free Tibet, India and International Tibet Network observed World Environment Day by raising awareness on the crucial environment situation inside Tibet. The UN declared theme for this year is focusing on Sustainable Living and hence the three Tibetan NGOs aimed to encourage the general public on adopting a more sustainable way of living. Individuals took their personal responsibilities and pledged for a sustainable society in the future.
Dharamsala, June 5: Today, on the significant occasion of World Environment Day (WED), Tibetan Women’s Association (TWA) and its global network of regional chapters observed the day by organizing various green events such as marathon race, cycle rally, mass clean up & tree plantation. The United Nations official environmental theme for the year 2012 is ‘Green Economy: Does it include you?’
An undertaking of ‘Women’s Environment & Development Desk’ (WEDD) of TWA, Central TWA along with its regional chapter of Dharamsala organized a green marathon in Mcleod Ganj, Dharamsala. TWA president Mrs. Tashi Dolma spoke to the participants about the event and its significance. Around 50 young people including students from Upper TCV took part in the marathon which kick-started at the famous Mcleod Square and to Bhagsunag waterfalls and then concluded at the gate of the Tsuklakhang temple. “TWA’s action on WED adhered to this year’s global theme, primarily because when one chooses alternative transportation methods-such as cycle or running, one supports the creation of green economy in the transport sector”, Tashi Dolma, President of TWA.
Alongside, a signature campaign to save ‘Tibetan Nomads’ was organized. TWA received nearly 1000 petitions signed today. According to Tenzin Woebum, head of TWA’s WEDD desk, “The petition campaign was officially started in January during the 32nd Kalachakra prayers and it will be a year-long campaign aimed at urging the 11 downstream nations that receive water from Tibet’s rivers, to protect Tibet’s fragile environment. People are urged to sign the petition titled ‘Nomads for planetary Third Pole’. The online signature campaign is also underway and one can sign the petition on the following link: http://tibetanwomen.org/2012/01/nomads-planetary-third-pole-petition/”
TWA’s WEDD pledges to hand deliver the entire signed petition to respective government delegates and environment ministries of the downstream nations and thereby relay the crucial message of the imperativeness of preserving Tibet’s environment which matters a great deal for Asia’s future security.
The mission of the Environment Desk at TWA is to raise awareness about the impacts of climate change upon Tibet’s unique ecosystem and upon the plight of Tibetan women The TWA environment desk is committed to disseminating timely and useful information that highlights to the international community the critical issue of climate change in Tibet and engaging in proactive measures and campaigns to combat the policies and the destructive impact that the policies hinges on the social lives of the Tibetan people. The environment desk believes that it is imperative to draw on the Chinese environmental policies that are denying the human rights of Tibetans living inside Tibet.
Dharamsala:On the eve of the occasion of His Holiness Dalai Lama’s 76th birthday, the Women’s Environment and Development Desk (WEDD) of Tibetan Women’s Association is launching its first phase of sustainable development projects inside Tibet to benefit Tibetan Women, particularly the displaced nomadic women.
The nomadic way of life in Tibet is increasingly under threat from changing social, political and environmental conditions. In September 2010, British newspaper ‘The Guardian’ reported that the Chinese Government is in the advanced stages of relocating between 50% and 80% of the 2.25 million nomads on the Tibetan plateau. Olivier De Schutter, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food, stated in December 2010 that the Tibetan nomads should not be compelled to relocate. De Schutter added that “it is Chinese government policy to implement the settling of Tibetan nomads, confiscating their land, and fencing pastoral areas, which has led to increased poverty, environmental degradation and social breakdown.”
Lacking a proper source of income the economic conditions of the displaced Tibetan nomads have worsened. According to Human Rights Watch, tens of thousands of Tibetan herders have been required to give up their homes and traditional practices to resettle, generally into urban or township settings where they struggle to establish themselves; in many cases this forced resettlement and displacement results in increased hardships and lower standards of living.
In addition to the struggles of the displaced Tibetan nomads to find a proper source of income, the lives of Tibetan women are being adversely impacted. TWA’s WEDD is sponsoring 14 female Yak (‘Dri’ in Tibetan) through the Tibet Foundation’s ‘Yak for Life’. Tibet Foundation is a UK charity that has an Aid to Tibet programme with a series of educational and healthcare projects in Tibet. Through TWA’s involvement in this programme 14 displaced nomadic families in the highlands of earthquake wrecked region of Kyegudo, Kham, in eastern Tibet will each receive a yak; this sustainable development project will ensure a constant source of income for the women and their families.
TWA’s WEDD has also launched a short video entitled ‘WEDD Green Action.’ The 3-minute video gives a sneak preview into the June 5 World Environment Day campaign, undertaken by TWA. This year India hosted for the first time the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), a global campaign known as “Forest: Nature at your service”. Five thousand Tibetan women belonging to 33 regional chapters of the Tibetan Women’s Association (RTWA) in India observed the World Environment Day by planting 20,000 trees in 10 Indian states. The video also features the New Delhi campaign in which TWA joined theIndian Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF). The video can be viewed on YouTube and www.tibet3rdpole.org