Tuesday Dec 5, 2023
Tuesday Dec 5, 2023

Climate change affecting indigenous people

Practical policies have to be developed to combat the effects of climate change say various organisation members

2021 Mar 18, 18:10, Kathmandu
File - Elderly members of indigenous Raute community gathering in Karkigaun, a village in hilly Jajrkot district in 1997. Photo courtesy: Jfortier via Wikipedia
When it comes to climate change, Nepal is the 4th most vulnerable country because of its geographical diversity. People who are highly dependent on nature are already seeing the effects of climate change.
Nepal is not only geographically diverse, but culturally as well. Different cultural groups have different kinds of living styles which is why climate change has been harsh on indigenous people, especially.
Preity Gurung, 29 working in Center for Indigenous people research and development as a research associate says “They are mostly living in geographically challenged places where modernization is a long way to come. They are practitioners of unique cultures and closely bonded with the environment for their livelihood.”
There are few organizations like Nepal Federation of Indigenous Nationalities (NEFIN), Indigenous voice, Center for Indigenous Peoples' Research and Development, to help indigenous people, for equal rights, their voices to be heard, and help get them out of their vulnerable state.
Tunga Rai working as National Coordinator, NEFIN Climate change program shares
“Indigenous have a distinct culture, way of living.
The skills and culture they have bonds them close to nature like farming, herbal medicine, fishing, animal rearing. ”
Rai shows his concern by saying “ The government policies are superficial and need to be more specific considering, understanding all the parties like old people, youth,Indigenous people. While making decisions we have to go to its root, specific problem. Different solutions should be made regarding different cultures and geographical areas,different needs.
Lakpa Hise, Chairperson of NEFIN says
“It is especially affecting women as they are responsible for household chores in most cases. Because of their financial state they can't afford modern equipment. They rely on woods to cook food, herbs for medicine, grasses for animal rearing, farming which is getting affected due to less rainfall, less snowfall, hard grasses and bushes, dry air, deforestation. Fishermen are facing problems with fewer fishes on the rivers and lakes. The vegetable and fruits are not bearing in time and are growing lesser in no.
Hise further shares “Climate change doesn't only affect their daily livelihood but the disaster that occurs, risks their life, and puts them in more difficult situations.”
Kiran Sunwar, Vice- chairperson of NEFIN shares
The policy to protect wildlife, natural sources by establishing wildlife parks and forbidding people to take anything from forest is again back firing these vulnerable groups. People like chepang, raute who rely on forest for grass, food, animals are left without anything to eat.
Sunwar adds about how distinct culture they have and while making policy, the government should consider these things. So, that policy is effective and beneficial.
Hise share “Government is making an effort but sitting in a 4 wall room and writing a policy is not going to be enough. Even we can’t make policies for them. The policies which involve their life should be discussed with them. Local voices need to be heard, so that these policies will be all rounded.”


Proper policies climate change Effects of climate change Indigenous populations Indigenous people of Nepal Raute Chepang natural resoources water resources Climate change impact nepal
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