Thrissur: Concerns of an impending environmental apocalypse, has led the Kodungallur educational sub-district to launch environmental parliaments in all schools under its jurisdiction to involve the younger generation in environmental conservation. The move, a first of its kind in the state, takes its cue from the global trend of incorporating youth in sustainable development.
According to authorities, the parliaments will bring together students, social activists and representatives of the local community. The body will be entrusted with the duty of formulating a database of ecologically sensitive spots including water bodies in the vicinity of every school.
"The parliaments will conduct an audit of their respective data-lists every six months so as to monitor and ensure the implementation of conservation activities," said T.N. Prathapan MLA, who designed the scheme. They will also report to the higher authorities any activities threatening the preservation of such systems, he added.
To initiate the formation of the school-level parliaments, the sub-district is all set to hold an environmental conference exclusively for school students on May 4 and 5. The event, to be held in association with the state bio-diversity board, will bring together about 300 students and teachers with environmental scientist and activists.
According to K.P. Laladas, member-secretary, Kerala State Bio-diversity Board, the objective is to provide an opportunity for children to present their environmental projects and increase their understanding of environmental issues. "This will also give them the chance to discuss the state of biodiversity and what they can do to protect species," he added.
As part of the scheme, the participants will be taken on field excursions to the various biodiversity hot spots in the region including the oxbow lake near Mala, Mangrove forests in Karoopadanna and other water bodies.