Changing Outlook on Harnessing Biodiversity Values – A Special Focus on Indian Himalaya
Keywords:Biodiversity conservation, medicinal plants, restoration, tradi- tional crops, wild edibles.
The Himalaya, as provider of goods and range of ecosystem services, is vital
for sustaining life of millions of people in uplands and billions in lowlands.
Indian National Action Plan on Climate Change has recognized the region
vital for ecological security of the country. However, growing demand for
bio-resources, combined with inadequate appreciation for values of goods
and services provided by Himalayan biodiversity, has led to the unsustainable
use of these resources, leading to environmental degradation in the region.
The paper also looks into the scenario as to how recent pandemic of COVID
19 has brought increased focus of people on bio-resources of the region.
More importantly it has suggested conservation and sustainable utilization
of biodiversity to ensure for sustaining the continuous flow of ecosystem
services and goods. Biodiversity in the region provides several opportunities,
however, under changing scenario, we need to think afresh and differently on
possibilities of finding better and optimal livelihood options, and the issues
of conservation in the region. In this context, larger focus on conservation
education has been stressed as a way forward. This paper attempts to build
a case for the biodiversity in Indian Himalayan Region through a SWOT assessment. Certain cases have been elaborated wherein the outlook has
changed to harness the values.
Badola, E., Rawal, R.S. & Dhyani, P.P. (2017). Stories of success-narratives
from a sacred land. GBPIHED, Almora, Uttarakhand (India).
Bhatt, I.D., Negi, V.S., & Rawal, R.S. (2020). Promoting Nature-Based
Solution (NbS) through restoration of degraded landscapes in the Indian
Himalayan Region. In Nature-based Solutions for Resilient Ecosystems
and Societies (pp. 197–211). Springer, Singapore.
Bhatt, I.D., Rawal, R.S. & Dhar, U. (2000). The availability, fruit yield and
harvest of Myrica esculenta Buch-Ham ex D.Don in Kumaun (West
Himalaya), India. Mountain Research and Development 20(2), 146–153.
Bhatt, I.D., Rawat, S., Badhani, A. & Rawal, R.S. (2017). Nutraceutical
potential of selected wild edible fruits of the Indian Himalayan region.
Food chemistry 215, 84–91.
Bhattacharya, A., Rawal, R.S., Negi G.C.S., Joshi, R., Sharma, S., Rawat,
D.S., Ishwar, N.H., Rawat, J.S., Sinha, P.R., Jia, L., & Marten, J. (2018).
Assessing Landscape Restoration Opputunities for Uttarakhand, India,
New Delhi, IUCN-India.
Chaplin-Kramer R., Dombeck E., Gerber J., Knuth K.A., Mueller N.D.,
Mueller M., Ziv G., & Klein A.M. (2014). Global malnutrition overlaps
with pollinator-dependent micronutrient production. Proceedings of the
Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 281(1794):20141799.
Chen, S.L., Yu, H., Luo, H.M., Wu, Q., Li, Q.F., & Steinmetz, A.
(2016). Conservation and sustainable use of medicinal plants: problems,
progress, and prospects. Chinese Medicine 11:37.
R. S. Rawal et al.
Chettri, N. & Sharma, E. (2016). Reconciling the mountain biodiversity
conservation and human wellbeing: drivers of biodiversity loss and new
approaches in the Hindu-Kush Himalayas. Proceedings of the Indian
National Science Academy 82, 53–73.
Desai, B.H., Oli, K.P., Yang, Yongping, Chettri, N., & Sharma, E. (2011).
Implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity: A retro-
spective analysis in the Hindu Kush-Himalayan countries. Kathmandu:
Dhar U., Rawal R.S., Airi S., Bhatt I.D., & Samant S.S. (2002). Promoting
outreach through conservation education programmes – Case study from
Indian Himalayan Region. Current Science 82(7), 808–815.
Dhar U., Rawal R.S., Samant S.S., Airi S., & Upreti J. (1999). People’s par-
ticipation in Himalayan biodiversity conservation: A practical approach.
Current Science 76(1), 36–40.
Dhar, U. (2002). Conservation implications of plant endemism in high-
altitude Himalaya. Current Science 82(2), 141–148.
D ́ıaz, S., Demissew, S., Joly, C., Lonsdale, W.M. & Larigauderie, A. (2015).
A Rosetta Stone for nature’s benefits to people. PLoS Biology, 13(1),
Farooquee, A.N., & Maikhuri, R.K. (2009). Communities and their agro-
biodiversity priorities for agriculture in Uttarakhand Himalaya, India.
Outlook on Agriculture 38(4), 383–389.
Fitter, A.H., & Fitter, R.S.R. (2002). Rapid changes in flowering time in
British plants. Science 296, 1689–1691.
Forest Survey of India 2019 – State of Forest Report. FSI Dehradun.
Gaira K.S., Rawal R.S., & Singh K.K. (2016). Variations in pollinator density
and impacts on large cardamom (Amomum subulatum Roxb.) crop yield
in Sikkim Himalaya. India J Asia-Pacifc Biodiv 9, 17–21.
Garibaldi L.A., Carvalheiro L.G., Vaissi`ere B.E., Gemmill-Herren B.,
Hip ́olito J., Freitas B.M., Ngo H.T., Azzu N., S ́aez A., ̊Astr ̈om J. & An J.
(2016). Mutually beneficial pollinator diversity and crop yield outcomes
in small and large farms. Science 351(6271), 388–391.
Goraya, G.S,. & Ved, D.K. (2017). Medicinal Plants in India: An Assessment
of their Demand and Supply. National Medicinal Plants Board, Ministry
of AYUSH, Government of India, New Delhi and Indian Council of
Forestry Research & Education, Dehradun.
Hajjar, R., Jarvis, D.I. & Gemmill-Herren, B. (2008). The utility of crop
genetic diversity in maintaining ecosystem services. Agriculture Ecosys-
tems & Environment 123, 261–270.
Changing Outlook on Harnessing Biodiversity Values 77
Han, X., Smyth, R.L., Young, B.E., Brooks, T.M., & S ́anchez de Lozada, A.
(2014). A Biodiversity Indicators Dashboard: Addressing Challenges to
IPCC (2007). Panel on Climate Change Fourth Assessment Report. See http:
IUCN (2020). Internation Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN.Org).
Kala C.P. (2005). Indigenous uses, population density and conservation of
threatened medicinal plants in protected areas of the Indian Himalayas.
Conservation Biology 19, 368–378.
Maikhuri R.K., Rao, K.S., & Semwal R.L. (2001). Changing scenario of
Himalayan agroecosytem: Loss of agrobiodiversity, an indicatorof envi-
ronmental change in central Himalaya, India. The Environmentalist 20,
Maikhuri R.K., Semwal R.L., Rao K.S., Singh K., & Saxena K.G. (2000a).
Growth and ecological impacts of traditional agroforestry tree species in
Central Himalaya, India. Agrofor. Syst. 48, 257–272.
Maikhuri R.K., Senwal R.L., Rao K.S., & Saxena K.G. (1997) Rehabilitation
of degraded community lands for sustainable development in Himalaya:
a case study in Garhwal Himalaya, India. International Journal of
Sustainable Development & World Ecology 4(3), 192–203.
Maikhuri, R.K., Rana, U., Rao, K.S., Nautiyal, S., & Saxena, K.G. (2000b).
Promoting ecotourism in the buffer zone areas of Nanda Devi Biosphere
Reserve: An option to resolve people—policy conflict. International
Journal of Sustainable Development & World Ecology 7(4), 333–342.
Maikhuri, R.K., Rao, K.S., & Saxena, K.G. (2004). Bioprospecting of wild
edibles for rural development in the central Himalayan mountain of
India. Mountain Research and Development 24, 110–113.
Maikhuri, R.K., Rawat, L.S., Farooquee, N.A., & Rao, K.S. (2009). Science
motivational training programme. Current Science 1040–1043.
Mamo G., Sjaastad E., & Vedeld P. (2007). Economic dependence on forest
resources: a case from DendiDistrict, Ethiopia. Forest Policy Economics
Mehta, P., Sekar, K.C., Bhatt, D., Tewari, A., Bisht, K., Upadhyay, S., Negi,
V.S., & Soragi, B. (2020). Conservation and prioritization of threat-
ened plants in Indian Himalayan Region. Biodiversity and Conservation
Murphy I.K., Bhat P.R., Ravindranah N.H., & Sukumar R. (2005). Financial
valuation of non-timber forest productflows in Uttara Kannada District,
Western Ghats, Karnataka. Current Science 10(25), 1573–1579.
R. S. Rawal et al.
Negi V.S., & Maikhuri R.K. (2013). Socio-ecological and religious perspec-
tive of agrobiodiversity conservation: issues, concern and priority for
sustainable agriculture, Central Himalaya. Journal of agricultural and
environmental ethics 26(2), 491–512.
Negi V.S., Bhatt I.D., Phondani P.C., & Kothyari B.P. (2015). Rehabil-
itation of degraded community land in Western Himalaya: linking
environmental conservation with livelihood. Current Science 520–528.
Negi V.S., Maikhuri R.K., & Rawat L.S. (2012). Paradigm and ecological
implication of changing agricultural land-use: A case study from Govind
Wildlife Sanctuary, Central Himalaya, India. Journal of Mountain Sci-
ence 9(4), 547–557.
Negi V.S., Rana S., Giri L., & Rawal R.S. (2020). Caterpillar Fungus in
the Himalaya,Current Understanding and Future Possibilities. G.B. Pant
National Institute of Himalayan Environment, Kosi-Katarmal, Almora,
Uttarakhand, India. ISBN Number: 978-93-5416-900-7.
Negi, C.S., Pant M., Joshi P., & Bohra S. (2014). Yar tsa Gunbu [Ophiocordy-
ceps sinensis (Berk.) G.H. Sung et al.]: the issue of its sustainability.
Current Science 107, 882–887.
Negi, V.S, Maikhuri, R.K., & Rawat, L.S. 2011. Non-Timber Forest Products
(NTFPs): A Viable Option for Biodiversity Conservation and Liveli-
hood Enhancement in Central Himalaya. Biodiversity and Conservation
Negi, V.S., Kewlani, P., Pathak, R., Bhatt, D., Bhatt, I.D., Rawal, R.S.,
Sundriyal, R.C. & Nandi, S.K., (2018). Criteria and indicators for pro-
moting cultivation and conservation of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants
in Western Himalaya, India. Ecological indicators 93, 434–446.
Palni, L.M.S., Lal A. & Pant, M. (2018). Ex situ approaches to conser-
vation of Himalayan Biodiversity with particular reference to medici-
nalplants.In: Plant Diversity in the Himalaya Hotspot Region (Eds. Das
AP and Bera S). Indian Books and periodicals.
Pathak, R., Negi, V.S., Rawal, R.S. & Bhatt, I.D. (2019). Alien plant inva-
sion in the Indian Himalayan Region: state of knowledge and research
priorities. Biodiversity and Conservation 28(12), 3073–3102.
Rawal RS, Bhatt ID, Sekar KC, & Nandi SK (2013) The Himalayan Bio-
diversity: Richness, Representativeness, Uniqueness and Life-support
Values. G.B. Pant Institute of Himalayan Environment and Development
(GBPIHED), Kosi-Katarmal, Almora, Uttarakhand, India, 84pp.
Rawat, S., Andola, H., Giri, L., Dhyani, P., Jugran, A., Bhatt, I.D. &
Rawal, R.S. (2014). Assessment of nutritional and antioxidant potential
Changing Outlook on Harnessing Biodiversity Values 79
of selected vitality strengthening Himalayan medicinal plants. Interna-
tional Journal of Food Properties 17(3), 703–712.
Rawat, S., Jugran, A.K., Bahukhandi, A., Bahuguna, A., Bhatt, I.D., Rawal,
R.S. & Dhar, U., (2016). Anti-oxidant and anti-microbial properties
of some ethno-therapeutically important medicinal plants of Indian
Himalayan Region. Biotech 6(2), p. 154.
Reddy, C.S., Dutta, K., & Jha, C.S. (2013). Analysing the gross and net
deforestation rates in India. Current Science 105, 1492–1500.
Roosta, R.A., Moghaddasi, R., & Hosseini, S.S. (2017). Export target mar-
kets of medicinal and aromatic plants. Journal of Applied Research on
Medicinal and Aromatic Plants. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jarmap.20
Samant S.S., Dhar U. & Palni L.M.S. (1998). Medicinal plants of
Indian Himalaya: diversity, distribution. Potential Value, Gyanodaya
Shahidullah A.K., & Haque C.E. (2010). Linking medicinal plant production
with livelihood enhancement in Bangladesh: Implications of a vertically
integrated value chain. The Journal of Transdisciplinary Environmental
Studies 9(2), 1.
Sharma, E. (2017). China–India collaborative opportunities on science and
technology for sustainable development of the Hindu Kush Himalaya.
Science Bulletin 3, 1–10.
Singh, R.D., Gumber, S., Tewari, P. & Singh, S.P. (2016). Nature of forest
fires in Uttarakhand: frequency, size and seasonal patterns in relation to
pre-monsoonal environment. Current Science 111(2): 398–403.
Spehn, E.M., Rudmann-Maurer, K., K ̈orner, C. & Maselli, D. (2010).
Mountain biodiversity and global change. Global Mountain Biodiversity
Telwala Y., Brook B.W., Manish K. & Pandit M.K. (2013). Climate-induced
elevational range shifts and increase in plant species richness in a
Himalayan biodiversity epicentre. PloS one 8(2):e57103.
Thakur, S., Negi, V.S., Pathak, R., Dhyani, R., Durgapal, K., & Rawal, R.S.
(2020). Indicator based integrated vulnerability assessment of commu-
nity forests in Indian west Himalaya. Forest Ecology and Management
Tolangay, D. & Moktan, S. (2020). Trend of studies on carbon sequestration
dynamics in the Himalaya hotspot region: A review. Journal of Applied
and Natural Science 12, 647–660.
R. S. Rawal et al.
Umakanth, B., Vishalakshi, B., Sathish Kumar, P., Rama Devi, S.J.S.,
Bhadana, V.P., Senguttuvel, P., Kumar, S., Sharma, S.K., Sharma, P.K.,
Prasad, M.S. & Madhav, M.S. (2017). Diverse Rice landraces of North-
East India enables the identification of novel genetic resources for
magnaporthe resistance. Frontiers in Plant Science 8, p. 1500.
United Nations (2020). General Assembly (UNGA). Resolution A/RES/73/2.
Political Declaration of the Third High-Level Meeting of the Gen-
eral Assembly on the Prevention and Control of Non-Communicable
WHO (2013). Global Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of Noncom-
municable Diseases 2013–2020.
Winkler, D. (2009). Caterpillar Fungus (Ophiocordyceps sinensis) Produc-
tion and Sustainability on the Tibetan Plateau and in the Himalayas.
Asian Medicine 5, 291–316