Panchayats & Rural Development

Madhya Pradesh is predominantly a rural state with 54,903 villages. Livelihoods of these people are dependent on agriculture and natural resources. The poor are the most vulnerable to Climate Change as they have the least resources to cope with these changes. Rural Development is largely a cross cutting sector. The sector drives the agenda of convergence and integration of Climate Change concerns in rural areas of Madhya Pradesh. There are many State Government initiated projects and programmes, under implementation, in the state which aims at the welfare of the rural population. The prominent concern for the sector is lack of education and information among communities about the risks posed by Climate Change and the ways to address them. Dependence on natural resources is the way of life but unsustainable practices of harvesting, irrigation, elimination of crop residue, forest degradation, deteriorating soil and water quality are augmenting the problems besides other impacts of Climate Change. The changed distribution of rains, longer dry spells are the challenges caused by Climate Change. Adding on to it are the health hazards caused due to Climate Change like tribal malaria, dengue, chikungunya, heat stress, jaundice, cholera etc. Distress migration, in view of repeated crop failures and lack of local options for alternative income generation activities, is a big concern which impedes the implementation of rural development schemes and activities. The strategies to deal with these situations are typical and most of them could be addressed through capacity building and education. For holistic rural development, it is imperative that inter-departmental coordination is ensured in successful implementation of any programme and activities 

Key Strategies:

  • Evaluation of existing rural development programmes in climate change context to make them climate proof
  • Training and capacity building of rural communities on aspects of soil & water conservation, sustainable harvesting and animal husbandry practices, need of fodder cultivation etc
  • Climate Change concerns to be institutionalised in the annual plans of Panchayat
  • Credit availability for rural infrastructure development and insurance against climate induced vulnerabilities
  • Exploring possibilities of making the villages carbon neutral
  • Impetus to climate change relevant research and development

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