Bonn (Germany)/Ahmedabad and New Delhi (India) – On 24 September 2020, the UNCCD secretariat and the Indian Center for Environment Education (CEE) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to advance innovation in the field of environmental education with focus on desertification, land degradation and drought.
Following UNCCD COP14 hosted by India in September 2019 in New Delhi, the UNCCD secretariat has been working toward implementation of the decisions taken by the Parties on scaling up sustainable land management practices and increasing the role of women and youth in achieving environmental and sustainability goals. In the words of UNCCD Deputy Secretary Dr. Pradeep Monga, who co-signed the MoU on behalf of the secretariat, now is an opportune time to reemphasize the role of education as a key driver to reduce land degradation, revitalize degraded lands and enhance drought resilience. Key partners such as CEE play an important part in implementing local initiatives, contributing to national and international dialogues and sharing best practices.
Mr. Kartikeya Sarabhai, Founder and Director of CEE, who co-signed the MoU, confirmed that through innovative educational strategies, capacity building programmes and research, the new partnership has the potential to increase public awareness, education and participation of youth and communities in positive action toward Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The MOU signing took place during an online ceremony with the participation of Dr. Ashok Khosla, Head of Development Alternatives and Chairman of CEE, and Mr. Jigmet Takpa, UNCCD focal point at the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MOEFCC) of India.
The CEE was established in 1984 as a MOEFCC Centre of Excellence to promote environmental awareness nationwide. The center develops innovative programmes and educational materials to build capacity in the field of education for sustainable development. Committed to ensuring that environmental education leads to action for sustainable development, the center undertakes field projects that demonstrate the role that education can play in achieving SDGs.