From its inception in the 1980s, conservation has been conceived as a triage discipline – one designed to work on the conservation battlefield, handling the immediate crises of biodiversity loss and climate change. The science and the practice then are strongly infused with a sense of gathering loss and the need to act at speeds that match the rate of this loss.
From a vantage point a few metres above sea level, and several metres below, Rohan Arthur will talk about how he sees this approach working for the low-lying atolls of the Lakshadweep in the Indian Ocean.
He will briefly describe the effects of climate change on the reefs of this archipelago based on the work of his team over the last 25 years and discuss what this may mean for the longer-term habitability of the atolls. Based on this, he will share some thoughts on how we could move beyond putting out individual fires to addressing more systemic issues underlying our planetary crises at local scales.
This session is part of the Let’s Talk Climate Change Talk series.
About the Speaker
Rohan Arthur is a marine biologist who works primarily in the oceanic islands in the Indian Ocean. He is the co-founder of the Nature Conservation Foundation, a research and conservation non-profit based in India. Since 1996, NCF has worked in a range of geographies across India, exploring novel and non-essentialist ways of doing conservation, favouring ideas over ideology, and committed to a joint flourishing of humans and nature.
Rohan’s work focuses largely on the Lakshadweep Archipelago, and the issues of climate change, coral reef ecology and local human use in Lakshadweep. In addition, his team works on a range of interdisciplinary studies in the Andaman Islands and along the west coast of India.
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