GUWAHATI: In a proud moment for Assam, eminent conservation biologist from the state Dr. Purnima Devi Barman has been honoured with United Nations' highest environment award.
Barman widely known for her relentless efforts in initiating a grassroot movement for conserving the rare Greater Adjutant Stork is among the recipients of Champions of the Earth Award from the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) announced on Tuesday.
The Champions of the Earth Award which is given away annually has so far been awarded to 111 laureates since 2005. While recognising the contributions of people engaged as flagbearers to protect the natural environment, the honour has been bestowed upon 26 world leaders, 69 individuals and 16 different organisations so far.
For the year 2022, around 2200 nominations for this award have been received from across the world.
Announcing the awards, the Executive Director of UNEP Inger Andersen said, "Healthy, functional ecosystems are critical to preventing the climate emergency and loss of biodiversity from causing irreversible damage to our planet. This year's Champions of the Earth give us hope that our relationship with nature can be repaired."
He added, "This year's Champions demonstrate how reviving ecosystems and supporting nature's remarkable capacity for regeneration is everyone's job: governments, the private sector, scientists, communities, NGOs and individuals."
Notably, Dr. Purnima Devi Barman has been bestowed upon the honour in the Entrepreneurial Vision category. She who leads the all-women grassroots conservation movement known as 'Hargila Army' has been endeavouring to protect the Greater Adjutant Stork from getting extinct.
As a part of the conservation efforts, Dr. Barman's 'Hargila Army' produce and sell textiles with motifs of the stork thus raising awareness on the nearly extinct species besides sustaining themselves financially.
Worthy to mention here is that Dr. Barman is also a recipient of the distinguished Green Oscar award and Nari Shakti Puraskar. In the month of October this year, she was also conferred the World Female Ranger Award 2022 by the international organization – How Many Elephants.
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