A32 COMMUNITY NEWS India Abroad January 10, 2014
Archis Ambulkar, an environmental engineering pro- fessional in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, has been appointed an expert with the United Nations Food
and Agricultural Organization’s Global Soil Partnership.
Ambulkar will be involved with GSP’s international
working group to promote sustainable management of soil
resources, their protection, conservation and sustainable
“Despite the essential role that soil plays in the life of people, there is no international governance body to advocate
and coordinate initiatives to ensure that knowledge and
recognition of soils is appropriately represented in global
change dialogues and decision-making processes,”
The GSP involves a five-point approach to develop
awareness and build capacities with the best available sci-
ence and contribute to the exchange of knowledge and
technologies among stakeholders for the sustainable man-
agement and use of soil resources.
Ambulkar currently serves as an expert pool member
with the United Nations World Oceans Assessment and is
an expert reviewer for the Inter-Governmental Panel for
Climate Change reports.
This group focuses on global reporting and assessment of
the state of marine environment, including socio-economic aspects to provide a scientific basis for decisions at the
global level on the world’s oceans and seas.
Ambulkar obtained his bachelor’s degree in chemical
engineering from Nagpur, and his master’s in environmental engineering from Bucknell University, Pennsylvania.
He presently works at Brinjac Engineering Inc,
Pennsylvania, and is actively involved with various technical committees for the Water Environment Federation, the
American Water Works Association and the American
Society for Testing and Materials International.
Archis Ambulkar on UN agency for soil conservation
The Sri Meenakshi temple in Texas recentlyconcluded week-longfestivi- ties of the Jeernodharana Ashta-
bandhana MahaKumbabhishekam (conse-
cration ceremony) of its new granite
Several pujas and chanting of mantras
were the highlights of the event, which was
also marked by cultural programs by local
The Ganesha temple, originally built in 1979, needed renovation.
The temple board and council unanimously decided to go ahead with
restoring the temple in 2012. Architect Ashok Mungara laid out the
plans and supervised the construction.
About a quarter of a million pounds of red and black granite from
Nagercoil, Tamil Nadu, were shipped to Pearland, Texas, for the temple.
The support from devotees was unparalleled as funds poured in
record time and the project remained debt-free. Nearly a million dollars were raised in just about 18 months for the renovation.
The new granite temple is elaborate, and bordered by sixteen pillars
each embellishing a different expression of Lord Ganesha.
Ganesha’s new abode in Texas
PHOTOGRAPHS COURTES Y: MILIND PATIL/HIBISCUS CREATIONS Devotees attend a ceremony.