Although Bhutan remains carbon neutral, the consequences of global warming due to human activities remain inevitable.

At the Mountain Echoes yesterday, the National Environmental Commission’s (NEC) secretary, Chencho Norbu, said that Bhutan’s glaciers are melting and the farmers are losing crops. “I propose a strong commitment from the developed countries to finance and provide financial or technical support to the carbon neutral country.”

He said that Bhutan allows developmental activity in the core city areas while there are certain rules and requirement for the protection of the environment if the area is located away from it.

An American journalist and 2012 Pulitzer Prize winner, Jeffery Gettleman, said that providing what the people need while protecting the environment is difficult. “We can’t talk about nature, environment, and wildlife without talking about poverty, human, and development.”

He said that if priority is given to wildlife, there will be people who might suffer but at the same time concrete building cannot be constructed, which will cause the nature to be gone forever. “Balancing the developmental activity along with protection of wildlife can be done by educating and engaging the community.”

Chencho Norbu also pointed out that individual countries learn about the industries and companies within the country and be responsible for the protection of the environment.

However, the panel also discussed how poor countries would have difficulty in adopting such an idea due to the lack of resources.

Phurpa Lhamo