Science Express Climate Action Special



National Council for Science & Technology Communication,
Department of Science & Technology,
Technology Bhawan,
New Mehrauli Marg,
New Delhi -110016,  India.

Vikram A Sarabhai Community Science Centre
Navrangpura, Ahmedabad – 380 009, 
Gujarat, India.

About Science Express

Science Express is a unique science exhibition mounted on a 16-coach AC train. It has been travelling across India successfully for the past seven years. Flagged off on 30 October 2007 by the then Hon'ble Prime Minister of India, Dr. Manmohan Singh and German Chancellor Dr. Angela Merkel, the exhibition train has since then covered over 1,22,000 km across the country, receiving more than 1.33 crore visitors at its 391 halts, in 1404 days. Science Express has thus become the largest, the longest running and the most visited mobile science exhibition in India and has created six Limca Book of Records in its journey so far.

From 2007 to 2011 the train travelled as 'Science Express’ displaying the world of micro and macro cosmos, spreading the awareness about strengths of science in meeting global challenges, including latest discoveries and innovations in the field of modern science. The coaches of Science Express were thematically represented on the Bing Bang, Nanocosmos, Building Blocks of Life, From Gene to Organism, Architecture of Mind,  World of Senses, Sensors, From Data to Knowledge, Global Challenges, Spaceship Earth, Our Home in the Cosmos and The Universe. It was a retreat for the visitors specially the students to know about cutting-edge science and technology through exhibits, models and audio-visual displays put up in the coaches of Science Express.

After four successful phases, Science Express was redesigned on the theme Biodiversity and from 2012-2014, it travelled as Science Express Biodiversity Special (SEBS), a unique collaboration between Department of Science & Technology (DST) and Ministry of Environment, Forests & Climate Change (MoEFCC), Govt. of India.

Science Express Biodiversity Special (SEBS)

With United Nations declaration of the current decade (2011-2020) as Decade on Biodiversity and India holding Chair of the Conference of Parties (COP 11) to Convention of Biological Diversity during 2012, Science Express was redesigned on the theme ‘Biodiversity’. It was a unique collaboration between Department of Science & Technology (DST) and Ministry of Environment, Forests & Climate Change (MoEFCC), Govt. of India. From 2012-2014, it travelled as Science Express Biodiversity Special (SEBS). The state-of-the-art exhibition aboard SEBS created widespread awareness on unique biodiversity of India, climate change and related issues among various sections of society, especially students. Out of the 16 coaches, MoEFCC had put up exhibitions in 8 coaches that were solely dedicated to showcasing the myriad biodiversity spread across the bio-geographical zones of India like Trans-Himalaya & Himalaya, the Gangetic Plain, North-East India, the Western Ghats, the Indian Desert, the Semi-Arid Zone, the Deccan Peninsula, the Coasts and the Islands. In rest of the rake, DST had put up exhibition on the themes of Climate Change, Biodiversity and Water, Sustainable Environment and Energy Conservation. In the second part of the coach on Energy Conservation, DST’s panels on Science Education in India had been placed.

In its three phases, SEBS covered over 54,000 km across India and received over 69 lakh visitors. Besides, the first phase of SEBS (2012) was visited by the highest number of people amongst all its phases till date.

Science Express Climate Action Special (SECAS)

After 7 successful tours across India, ‘’Science Express’’ has been redesigned on the theme ‘Climate Change’ and from 15 October 2015, it is running as 'Science Express – Climate Action Special (SECAS)'. It is a unique collaborative initiative of Department of Science & Technology, Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change (MoEFCC), and Ministry of Railway, Government of India.

The state-of-the-art exhibition aboard the 'Science Express – Climate Action Special (SECAS)' aims to create awareness among various sections of society, especially students, as to how Climate Change can be combated through mitigation and adaptation.

For Climate Change, 2015 could be a decisive year, with leaders of 190 nations gathering in Paris to discuss a possible new global agreement on Climate Change during the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 21) to the 1992 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the 11th session of the Meeting of the Parties (CMP 11) to the 1997 Kyoto Protocol. Thus, “Science Express”, redesigned as SECAS, intends to contribute towards increasing understanding of the science of climate change, the observed and anticipated impacts, and different possible responses. The previous 3 phases/runs of ‘’Science Express’’ were rolled out as a joint initiative of DST and MoEFCC as Biodiversity Special and showcased the myriad ‘Biodiversity of India’. Thus it was rational to shift the focus to the theme ‘Climate Change’ as it will affect the biodiversity of not just India but the entire globe as well.

Of the 16 coaches of SECAS, exhibition in 8 coaches developed by Centre for Environment Education (CEE) on behalf of MoEFCC, GoI is exclusively devoted to information, case studies and material related to various aspect of Climate change, the underlying science, impacts, adaptation activities, mitigation solutions and policy approaches in a manner that is easy to understand and interesting for not just school students but also the masses. 

The broad theme covered in each exhibition coach is as follows:

  • Coach 1: Understanding Climate Change - Insights in the climate as a system, the greenhouse gas effect and the underlying reasons for climate change with key message that the current change in the climate is due to human activities.
  • Coach 2: Impact of Climate Change - How temperature rise, monsoon variations, sea level rise are predicted to affect vital sectors like water, agriculture, forests and biodiversity, and human health and ways to reduce these.
  • Coach 3 & 4: Adaptation - Concepts of adaptation and examples from day to day life, adaptation strategies and stories from field. Adaptation options in urban and rural contexts and the adaptation actions India is taking.
  • Coach 5 & 6: Mitigation - Concept and definition with examples, emphasis on restoring balance, enhancing sinks and reducing emission through Renewable Energy (RE) technologies. Various programmes implemented by India and low carbon strategies and ambitious goal to increase RE footprint.
  • Coach 7: International Negotiations on Climate Change - Introduction to UNFCCC, IPCC and internationally agreed action & targets. Explaining concept of equity and common but differential responsibility, Kyoto protocol & other key outcomes of major COP, etc.
  • Coach 8: Handprint - What can one do at school, on roads, at home and in offices and focus on concept of lifestyle choices with the key message ‘Increase your Handprint. Decrease your Footprint’.
  • Coach 9 & 10: Exhibition put up by the Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Govt of India, covering themes like Biotechnology for bio-resources and nature conservation with emphasis on Tiger Conservation and Chemical Ecology and India’s research and development initiatives in field of Biotechnology.
  • Coach 11: Exhibition put up by the National Innovation Foundation (NIF) showcasing select innovations, demonstrating the ingenuity of common people and an innovative project which uses augmented reality techniques. Exhibition on themes like Innovations in S&T, Science Education, DST Scholarships & Schemes, Careers in S&T, etc.

SECAS will travel across the country for about 7 months, halting at 64 locations in 20 States, covering about 19,800 km. The exhibition will convey a strong message about Climate Change and will also be a good opportunity to generate dialogue and discussion.