CUPB celebrated World Oceans Day by hosting webinar and international quiz

BATHINDA: The Department of Botany at Central University of the Punjab, Bathinda (CUPB) celebrated World Oceans Day by hosting a webinar on “The Oceans of Planet Earth: Its Flywheel” and an international quiz. The theme of the Oceans Day celebrations was “Ocean Life and Livelihoods”. The program’s guest speaker was Professor Vinod Kumar Gaur, winner of the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize (1979) and former secretary of the Indian Government’s Ministry of Earth Sciences. This program was part of the United Nations World Oceans Day celebrations.

At first, Dr Felix Bast, HoD, Dept. of Botany welcomed the participants. During the keynote speaker presentation, Dr Bast mentioned that Professor Vinod Kumar Gaur is a world renowned seismologist and the first person to use GPS to calibrate the speed of the Indian tectonic plate moving towards the plate. Eurasian.

Professor Vinod Kumar Gaur mentioned that the Earth’s ocean acts as its flywheel as it circulates large reservoirs of energy and minerals and helps stabilize the temperature by absorbing large amounts of heat. He highlighted how the oceans open up vast avenues for economic exploration, including rare earth minerals. He also discussed the role of ocean conveyor belts, caused by thermohaline currents in the deep ocean and wind currents on the surface, in the movement of water around the world. Professor Gaur said that “although the nearest coastline is hundreds of kilometers from Punjab, this area was a coastline around 55 million years ago”. He pointed out that to mitigate the impact of carbon emissions and the greenhouse effect, the oceans have degraded their own health and have gradually become hot and acidified, thus increasing sensitivity to climate change. Professor Gaur also discussed the detrimental effects of increasing ocean water temperature on marine species and stressed that scientists around the world should work on creating technologies that can harness cyclical energy. oceans and nourish its regeneration potential.

In his presidential address, Prof. Raghavendra P Tiwari, vice-chancellor of the Central University of Punjab, claimed that increasing levels of water pollution have increased the toxicity in several pockets of the ocean to dangerous levels. which threatens the existence of marine life in such areas. He said the impact on one component of the earthing system will negatively affect other components. Therefore, all components of the Earth system, namely the lithosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere and atmosphere, must be considered and treated as an integral entity to save the flourishing human civilization on Mother Earth. Technologies developed to exploit natural resources should be part of the Sustainable Development Goals to ensure that the various component ecosystems coexist in healthy ways and complement and complement each other.

During this program, an International Quiz Competition was also organized in which 1360 participants from all over the world answered 15 questions on the theme of Oceans. Jaya Krishnan VM from Kerala, Anita Suresh Parsekar from Goa and Rahul Mukherjee from West Bengal took home the first, second and third prizes respectively. A large number of faculty members, academics and students from different departments of the university and beyond have participated in this program.

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