To remove misconceptions about climatology and blow some myths often spread on internet,the India Meteorological Department (IMD) has zeroed in on schoolchildren as its Climate Ambassadors.
The idea is to give children special training so that they,in turn,help the spread the correct information about climate and weather sciences. They would spread the message about lifestyle changes needed to mitigate the effects of climate change.
B Mukhopadhyay,deputy director general (DDG) climatology of IMD,told Newsline that urgent efforts are needed to make weather concepts clear to people. People are often not clear about concepts of climatology like summer solstice,winter solstice,and equinox. Also,a lot of misinformation is spread on internet about weather related issues and schoolchildren pick them up easily, he said.
India,along with the world,is facing the heat of climate change and amending lifestyles to mitigate it is of utmost interest but it was not being talked about as strongly as it should,Mukhopadhyay said.
The science of climatology has many aspects but the majority of them is not brought to the public area. We will try to acquaint students with these aspects, he said.
In order to train climate ambassadors,Mukhopadhyay said instead of just one open day,IMD plans to conduct a series of workshops and community outreach programmes.
To raise interest in students,we will start with science quiz. Instead of giving them gifts,we will enrol students with the right aptitude at special workshops, he said.
Other than basics,the workshops will focus on subjects related to carbon emission,global warming and other climatology topics. These workshops would be quite intensive to train students who would then act as amplifiers, he said.
Another important aspect the workshops would do is focus on waste management and air-pollution control. Tips on proper lifestyle changes for these efforts would be given to students,who would act both as peer educators and amplifiers of what they learn.