The constituent colleges of our University – Mahatma Gandhi Medical College & Research Institute (MGMCRI), Indira Gandhi Institute of Dental Sciences (IGIDS) and Kasturba Gandhi Nursing College (KGNC) jointly organized a one-day International Conference on Climate Change and Health(CCCON-2015) on the 9th January 2015. National and International experts from various fields – academia, governmental, non-governmental and field-level agencies participated in this unique knowledge sharing platform.
Prof. Rajaram Pagadala, our respected Chancellor declared the event open and Prof.K.R. Sethuraman, our respected Vice-Chancellor gave an overview of the entire day’s sessions. Some of the prominent invited speakers included
Prof. Michael Edwin, Notre Dame University, USA
Prof. Devi Prasad, Pondicherry University
Prof. Kathiresan, Annamalai University
Prof. Ganapathy, Anna University
Miss. Inge van Alphen, FERAL, Pondicherry
More than 350 delegates from various parts of the country had participated in the event. Besides the scientific sessions by the experts, there were competitive entries under the categories of – Poster Presentation, Photography, Mini-Movies and Paintings on the broad theme of “Environment and Health”. There was also an interactive panel-discussion where the audience actively participated in raising their queries and doubts.
The core messages that emerged during the event were:
Climate change is very much real – it is happening right now, all around us. We now have substantial evidence that human activities have a definite role in the global climate changes that we are witnessing. Climate Change affects human health in multiple and complex ways – some direct and immediate; some indirect and in the long-term.The health risks from Climate Change are global and are difficult to reverse.
The direct impacts on health are primarily from exposure to increased extreme weather events – such as floods, cyclones and tsunamis. The less direct effects include changing patterns of vector-borne diseases, affecting food productivity and more.
CCCON-2015 was an attempt to sensitize participants about Climate Change related issues and solutions. There is a commonly prevailing misconception that nothing big can be done as an individual about global climate change and we want to tackle this mistaken notion. Through CCCON-2015, we hope that the participants have been provided with the seed-message – that individuals can and do make a big difference, by adopting small changes in their everyday life contributing to a greener future.