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Updated: February 4, 2010 20:54 IST

Panel to enhance Environment Ministry’s scientific capacity

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Union Environment and Forests Minister Jairam Ramesh.
PTI Union Environment and Forests Minister Jairam Ramesh.

After launching a network of scientists to boost research on climate change, Environment Minister Jairam Ramesh will now set up a panel led by former ISRO chief K. Kasturirangan to enhance the scientific capacity of his ministry. Mr. Ramesh will announce the names of the panel members at a function here on Thursday.

“The Minister is keen on setting up the committee headed by K. Kasturirangan, Member (Science), Planning Commission to recommend steps to strengthen the ministry’s scientific foundation,” a senior environment official said.

He said though the Environment Ministry was created as a department in Science Ministry, over the years its scientific foundation has been eroded.

Besides Mr. Kasturirangan, the panel will have five eminent scientists from across the country. It will suggest ways on how the scientific foundation of the Environment Ministry can be strengthened, how to take up new scientific activities and how science and technology can influence the decisions of this ministry – all part of the institutional re-design and restructure of the ministry.

Stressing that much of the data derived from Western sources was found to be biased, the Minister has recently launched Indian Network for Climate Change Assessment (INCCA), involving 127 research bodies. It would collaborate with the ISRO to build the country’s “monitoring, measuring and modelling” capabilities and to respond to climate change in an innovative way.

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