CEESP Youth Leadership Team (YLT) member Shalini Dhyani (India) attends Planet Under Pressure 2012

CEESP Youth Leadership Team (YLT) member Shalini Dhyani from India attended Planet Under Pressure 2012 in Excel, London United Kingdom from 25 th -29 th March, 2012.

Shalini presented her work on “ Utility of fodder banks for reducing impacts anthropogenic pressure and climatic changes from forests of Western Himalaya” under the Session Sustainable Society dedicated to the theme Options and opportunities.

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Her work on fodder bank establishment and development contributed the solutions of adapting and mitigating the impacts of climate change by adaptive co-management strategy. The lessons presented from her project (reducing pressure from forests by using fast growing and high biomass yielding indigenous species) in the conference indicated that climate change adaptation requires an integrated conservation and development programs together with focus on disaster risk reduction.

Planet Under Pressure 2012 was the largest gathering of global change scientists leading up to the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) with a total of 3,018 delegates at the conference venue and over 3,500 that attended virtually via live web streaming. The Plenary sessions and the Daily Planet news show continues to draw audiences world-wide. An additional number of organisations, including 150 Science and Technology Centres worldwide streamed the plenary sessions live at Planet Under Pressure-related events reaching an additional 12,000 viewers. The first State of the Planet Declaration was issued at the conference. Recognizing the complexity and urgency of current challenges, researchers attending Planet under Pressure conference proposed a new vision for science for global sustainability. Scientists issued the first “State of the Planet” declaration at a major gathering of experts on global environmental and social issues in advance of the major UN Summit Rio+20 in June. The declaration says, “Research now demonstrates that the continued functioning of the Earth system as it has supported the well being of human civilization in recent centuries is at risk.” It states that consensus is growing that we have driven the planet into a new epoch, the Anthropocene, where many planetary scale processes are dominated by human activities. It concludes society must not delay taking urgent and large scale action. Over 3,000 experts in climate change, environmental geo‐engineering, international governance, the future of the oceans and biodiversity, global trade, development, poverty alleviation, food security and more discussed the intricate connections between all the different systems and cycles governing our ocean, air, land and the human and animal life dependent on those environments.

The conference presented new initiatives as recommendations for the Rio+20 Summit:

  1. Going beyond GDP by taking into account the value of natural capital when measuring progress.
  2. A new framework for developing a set of goals for global sustainability for all


  1. Creating a UN Sustainable Development Council to integrate social, economic

and environmental policy at the global level.

  1. Launching a new international research programme, Future Earth, that will focus

on solutions.

  1. Initiating regular global sustainability analyses.

Website Welcome to the Anthropocene designed to improve our collective understanding of the Earth system was also launched during the conference. The site aims to inspire, educate and engage people about humanity's impact on Earth. Its unique combination of high-level scientific data and powerful imagery will help people visualize and better understand humanity's geographic imprint in recent time.

3-minute video presenting journey through the last 250 years of our history, from the start of the Industrial Revolution to the Rio+20 Summit was also launched during the conference. The film charts the growth of humanity into a global force on an equivalent scale to major geological processes. The film is part of the world's first educational webportal on the Anthropocene, commissioned by the Planet Under Pressure conference, and developed and sponsored by 

Youth and Young Scientists Events and Activities at Planet Under Pressure 2012

The Planet under Pressure conference provided opportunities for Youth and Young Scientists and Researchers to meet up during the conference, both physically through organised activities at the ExCeL conference venue, through partnership with 150 Science and Technology Centres across the world, and virtually through viewing the conference on-line and interacting through the Young Scientists/Youth Forum.

On Day 1 of the conference, a group of high school students taking part in the UK Voice of Youth Project, gave a Plenary Presentation session and submitted 10 questions to the conference to be considered.

10 Key Questions Posed by the Voice of Youth High School Student Delegation to for the Planet Under Pressure 2012 Conference

  • 1. What laws can be implemented to protect and promote the diversity of our ecosystems?
  • 2. Do the conference delegates feel that we will find a solution which balances the conservation of biodiversity with feeding our growing population in the next 10 years?
  • 3. What should our priorities be in the fight to reduce pollution, and how can we encourage people to exercise individual accountability?
  • 4. How can we find sustainable ways of sourcing and providing water?
  • 5. Generally, should we be looking for quick fixes, or slower, more sustainable solutions to ensure that we protect our earth's environment?
  • 6. How can news agencies be encouraged to report on environmental success stories?
  • 7. How can developed nations assist developing nations in achieving environmental targets and creating sustainable infrastructure?
  • 8. We would like to see a wider variety of possible energy and fuel alternatives explored & researched and a more public exchange of knowledge between the scientists and researchers and the industry - do you think this could happen?
  • 9. What can be done to ensure that our helium resources, and others like it, aren't depleted as soon as they are forecast to be?
  • 10. How can we enjoy the same attractive lifestyle that we have today, but make that lifestyle much more sustainable?

Throughout the Planet Under Pressure conference, a group of young scientists and researcher delegates scheduled meetings, created a blog, and developed the Planet Under Pressure Young Delegate Statement that was presented in the closing plenary session on Day 4

For further information on Planet Under Pressure conference see: http://www.planetunderpressure.com

Work area: 
Social Policy
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