By Tenzin Dharpo
SFT and TWA performing a skit at main square of McLeod Ganj on Nov. 14, 2017. Phayul photo-Tenzin Monlam.
DHARAMSHALA, Nov. 14: Two Dharamshala based Tibetan NGO’s today urged participating nations at the 23rd edition of the “Conference Of the Parties” (COP) summit at Bonn, Germany, to discuss and talk about Tibet’s environment and its importance with the global climate in mind.
Activist group Students for a Free Tibet India and Tibetan Women’s Association jointly called for climate action for Tibet also known as “Third Pole” to the ongoing UN COP23 summit (6-17 November).
A skit was performed at the main square of McLeod Ganj here, portraying China’s increasingly self-centered development projects that include numerous mega dam projects and ambitious river diverting plans leaving downstream nations in a perilous dilemma over water resources.
“With this event we want to create awareness about the rivers originating from Tibet and the threat that it imposes on downstream countries as result of dam construction. The Tibetan people and Tibet’s fragile environment deserve a voice at the UN COP23 summit, and we want the UN to take urgent climate action for Tibet: Roof of the World”, said Tenzin Tselha, National Director at Students for a Free Tibet India.
The organizers further raised alarm over China’s plans on 1000-km tunnel to take Brahmaputra water to Xinjiang that became a contentious issue earlier this month. China’s current ‘Five Year Plan’ pointed to Beijing’s move towards renewable energy and green growth fossil fuels includes an intensified reliance on ‘mega-dams’ on all major Tibetan rivers. The negative impacts of dam construction and hydropower generation are recognized and documented internationally, showing that large dams are not a “clean energy” solution to the climate crisis, the NGOs said in a statement.
Dawa Dolma from Tibetan Women’s Association said, “Tibet's ecology is not a concern for Tibetans alone. It is a central concern for people all over the world, as Tibet is well known for being called the “roof of the world “and” Third Pole. Tibet is also a source of fresh water for 1.4 billion people in the world and hence, not just Tibetans but the downstream Asian nations and the world at large must advocate together to quench the thirst of everyone equally.”
The 23rd annual “Conference Of the Parties” (COP) under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) will see more than 15000 participants from all over the world to discuss global climate and environmental concerns.