Gauhati University has been awarded District Green Champion Award 2021-22 for its green initiatives in the campus and the neighbourhood.
Sustainability @ GU
The university sits by the side of a small hilly area with natural wetlands and forests. The campus is full of greenery and is a site of rich biodiversity. Out of a total 484 acres of campus land, only about 16% is covered by built-up structures. Natural forests cover about 19% of the camous while natural wetlands cover about 16% of the area. The university also has a Botanical Garden which is spread across of an area of 2 acres by the side of a hill and an Aquaculture and Biodiversity Centre.
With its rich biodiversity, GU is comitted to encourage sustainable behaviour at all fronts. Some sustainable practice and trends can be summarised below.
GU has now switched to almost 100% LED (Light Emitting Diode) lighting.
Streets lights are automatically controlled through day-night sensors.
Increasing solar power coverage.
All new air conditioning units (window, non-central) procured are inverter-based compressor with 5-star energy rating.
The university has its own water distribution system with gravity-assited distribution and provision of aquifer recharging.
Segregated garbage collection and routine disposal.
Pastic-free campus initiative.
The Energy and electricity audits are regularly conducted in the campus with an aim to cover the aggregate consumption of Electrical and Natural gas energy within the Gauhati University campus including academic and administrative blocks. On average, 2, 579,440 units per month of electricity was consumed by the University in the year 2020-21 including the residential quarters which is slightly lesser of around 0.4% monthly average electricity consumption from the last year. To compensate for the rising power requirement, solar panels are installed within the GU campus. Annually, GU has generated 288000 KWH of electrical energy through the solar panels. However production was reduced to 139000 KWH in the period 2020-21. Solar capacity of GU campus was augmented with a 50 KWP new solar panel.
Biodiversity @ GU
The Gauhati University campus is home to different varieties of fauna as well as flora. A recent audit found increasing trends of most of the biotic components in the GU campus probably due to the enhancement of suitability and succession of the habitat mosaic supported by the existing land cover. It is also worth mentioning to state that, if we see the IUCN/IWPA threatened category of biodiversity components. The Gauhati University campus supports a number of IUCN threatened and IWPA 1972 Schedule-I species and as well as endemic species. Detailed information has been incorporated within the report.
Faunal Diversity of GU Campus
The present audit started from July 2020 and continued till June 2021 and the study documented altogether 14 different major groups of animal components in the Gauhati University Campus. Of which, 33 species of mammals, 180 species of birds, 44 species of herpetofauna, 16 species of free-ranging and 74 species of cultured fish, 180 species of butterflies, 58 species of Odonata, 50 species of Coleoptera, 30 species of Hymenoptera, 30 species of Orthoptera, 89 species of Arachnida (88 spiders and 1 scorpion), 9 species of crustacea and 7 species of Gastropods, 3 species of Chilipoda and 5 species of Annelida are recorded. See Table.1 and Fig.1 below for faunal coverage of our campus.
Data Source : Department of Zoology, GU
In addition to past data of 30 mammal species, the present study added three incremented species that include Crab-eating Mongoose, Golden Jackal, and Yellow-throated martin. In the case of avian fauna, altogether 10 new additions to the bird species list of GU campus. The notable species are such as Blue-bearded bee-eater, Pale-headed wood packer, Dusky Warbler, Bluethroat, Pheasant-tailed Jacana, Common Coot, Rosy Pipit, little spider hunter, Red-headed marlin, Black Winged Kite, Eastern Marsh Harrier, Hen Harrier, Pallid Harrier, Griffon Vulture, Red-headed Vulture.
Among herpetofauna diversity, 11 amphibians, 12 snakes, 13 lizards, and five turtle species were recorded so far in the past report, whereas, recently, three new incremented species were found viz., Himalayan keel-back, Banded Krait, and Assam Day Gecko. Presently, altogether 15 indigenous fish species have been successfully breeding in captive conditions at the aquaculture and biodiversity canter of GU, these are such as China Andrea, Channa stewartii, Danio dangle, Esomus danrica, Garra annandalei, Garra gotyla, Pethias halynius, Puntius chola, Ctenops nobilis, Devario aequipinnatus, Microphis deocata, Tariqi labeolatius, Ompok pabda, Clarias magur, Heteropneustes fossilis. Among butterflies, 20 new species were detected. They are - Pasha, Common batwing, Hairstreaks, Blue Pansy, Angle red forester, blue admiral, Orchid Tit, Common banded Owl, Banded Ace, Tiger Hooper, Stripped Dawn fly, Rice swift and Small Dart let. Among Odonata, 6 new species, in Coleopteran, 10 new species, in Arachnidan, 12 spider species, Hymenoptera, 10 new species, Crustacean, 2 new species, Gastropods, 1 new species, Chilipoda, 3 new species, Annelid 5 new species were found.
You can go through our Green audits for last three years here.
Animal Corridors within the Campus
Gauhati University campus is acting as an endangered animal corridors owing to its high biodiversity and natural landscapes and as well as forest areas. The campus harbours Common leopard-Panthera pardus fuscus and IUCN endangered Bengal Slow Loris-Nycticebus bengalensis.
Common Leopard Corridor
Altogether 3-4 Common leopard are residing within the Gauhati University Campus and its associated forest areas annually. The overall forest complexes are such as the Gauhati University-Botanical Garden Forest complex, Gauhati University- Jalukbari reserve forest complex and Gauhati University-Assam engineering college forest complexes areas. The Leopard breeds in the forest area complex and the 2 Youngs were raised annually and after one year of age they were locally migrated through two corridors.
There are two sub-Corridors (1) Gauhati University to nearby Tetelia forest about to 1.5 km through university employee quarter near Jalukbari Electricity Office end entered into tetelia through NH-37.
(2) Gauhati University Botanical Garden to Assam Engineering College Campus and Jalukbari Reserve Forest which passes through the private road of Assam Engineering College near AEC Guest House to Tetelia forest and Deepor beel bird sanctuary using the fellow-land and rail roads and then Rani-Garbhanga reserve forest.
Bengal Slow Loris Corridor
The Bengal slow loris is surviving within the Gauhati University forest- Jalukbari forest complex and Near Sanskrit department forest-Jalukbari RF-AEC forest landscapes, Forest area near university radar Station and forest area near RCC-2, 4, 5 forest complex. The entire forest areas and University campus is contiguous landscapes so it could not be separated.
Some mammals, birds, and insects found in GU campus
Yellow Throated Martin (Schedule-II)
Common Iora-Aegithina tiphia Rose Ringed Parakeet-Psittaculakrameri
Large Cormorant-Phalacrocorax carbo
Lesser Adjutant Stork-L.javanicus
Small Green Awlet-Buraraamar