An Indian researcher in NIES - Tsukuba
Preeti Dass

First I would like to extend by thanks to Environment Agency of Japan for awarding me an Eco Frontier Fellowship (EFF) and the Center for Global Environmental Research (CGER) for inviting me to write an article in CGER newsletter. I am very pleased to have the opportunity to be working with Dr. Inamori and Dr. Mizuochi on climate change issues.

I am Indian born in Ujjain, which falls in a centrally located Province called Madhya Pradesh. India is the only country in world known for its uniqueness, i.e. unity in diversity. The diversity starts from land itself as it is made up of snow bound peaks of Himalayas, beautiful cool hills, fertile river valleys, tropical rainforest, blistering hot desert and beautiful coast. The diversity extend to people and their culture, religion, languages and life style

I post graduated from Vikram University in 1991 in Botany. I did my Ph.D. in 1997. My thesis was entitled " Ecological studies in nitrogen removal from domestic wastewater through ammonia volatilization, nitrification and denitrification in land application method." After doing Ph.D., I continued my research and joined the Institute of Environment Management and Plant sciences in 1997 as senior researcher to work on " Methane and Nitrous oxide emission from grassland, forest, agriculture and wetland habitats (under Govt. of India's Dept. of science and Technology funded project). Methane and Nitrous oxide are the important green house gases contributing to the global warming. Wastewater treatment produces the aforesaid gases. My work at NIES is to study on operation and management techniques to control methane and nitrous oxide from natural wastewater treatment process using soil and vegetation.

Japan has a very special place in the hearts of Indians from time immemorial. A great Indian sage Swami Vivekananda in late 18th century said that if ever one gets an opportunity to see foreign land one should choose Japan. I now personally feel how true were his words. Now, I come to the care and customs of the Japanese side, which is unforgettable. The gesture of meeting the fellow by the host researcher on arrival in Japan is commendable. The supervisor's support in helping the fellow in his adjustments in Japan, including arranging the accommodation before his arrival and opening his bank account, are some of the examples in this direction. In my case, I wish to thank my supervisor Dr. Mizuochi sensei for everything. I felt homesick in my initial few days, but now I feel comfortable living in Japan.

Nevertheless, I appreciate Japanese people who are very warm and cooperative and who help the foreigners like me.