Team


IORA has a competent and experienced team who collaborate to leverage their unique, integrated research and work experiences across various forestry and environment sectors to deliver innovative solutions. The in-house expertise involves climate change, forestry, remote sensing, environmental and forest economics, ecosystem services evaluation and valuation, biodiversity, carbon asset management and socio-economics. IORA has developed associations and entered into partnerships with various research and funding agencies all over the world, thereby getting access to resources, which often prove helpful in providing best services to the clients.


Swapan Mehra

Founder and CEO

Mr. Swapan Mehra is a forestry expert with proficiency in designing forestry, biodiversity conservation, ecosystem services evaluation, renewable energy projects and policy interventions. He has been involved with government ministries, international technology providers and ecology experts to create strategic partnerships for identifying and implementing projects across various countries.

He is currently leading IORA’s initiatives in ecosystem services, REDD+,climate change and sustainability projects. The activities covers institutional frameworks and financing and developing toolkits. He is a member of IUCN, Geneva, Technical Working Group on biodiversity offsets; reviewer, UNEP, evaluation of tiger reserves in India under National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA); member of the expert panel on Jurisdictional Nested REDD (JNR) program of Voluntary Carbon Standard (VCS). Swapan is heading the designing of a unique mango diversity conservation program for India in partnership with Bioversity International. He is a co-author of the Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB) initial study for India. He has partnered with Regional Centre North East India, Ministry of Environment and Forest for a exercises to evaluate feasibility of REDD+ projects in the region. He is involved in developing India’s largest community based biogas program (India Organic Waste Management Program). He has developed three NAMA, MRV and operational concepts in partnership with KEMCO Korea and in collaboration with IEX, India. He is working on developing a south-south platform for knowledge and financial exchange based on environmental commodities in partnership with Instituto Acao Verde, Mato Grosso, Brazil.

Prior to founding IORA, Swapan held top management positions with some of the largest carbon finance firms in the world including EcoSecurities, AES and Evolution Markets. In these roles, he led multi-disciplinary teams across South Asia and Middle East, identifying and implementing climate change mitigation projects that generated over 5 million Carbon Credits. Swapan has been working with environmental finance mechanisms to catalyze effective climate change solutions in India.

He is a frequent speaker at many national and international conferences, industry events and has presented at the CleanTech Group, FICCI, CII Carbon Conclaves, IIT Delhi, British High Commission Singapore, INSEE, TERI, Council of Power Utilities among others. Most recently he delivered a keynote speech on Carbon Finance for REDD+ at the Wageningen University, Netherlands. He was selected as a LEAD International Fellow for 2011 and awarded the prestigious Donella Meadows Fellowship by the Balaton Group.


 

Digvijay Chauhan

Head - Carbon Markets

Digvijay Chauhan is a carbon-market expert with over 7 years of industry leading experience in identification and commercialization of carbon offsets and CDM projects. He is credited with developing innovative new products like carbon offset backed pre-payment and debt financing. He previously worked with EcoSecurities, a global leader in carbon offset development, and MF Global, one of the world's leading commodity brokerage houses, where he headed the carbon offset trading desk for India. He has been involved in the origination transaction of more than 6 million carbon offsets from India. At IORA, he heads the development of carbon financing strategy for our various climate change mitigation projects.


 

Ashwin A.S.

Senior Manager

Ashwin A. S., Senior Manager, IORA Ecological Solutions is an expert in the field of climate change related market mechanisms and sustainable development for the last seven years. He is a Master of Science in Forestry (Management and Economics) (2007) from Forest Research Institute, Dehradun (an institute under the Ministry of Environment and Forest, Government of India). Ashwin is also a qualified QMS (ISO 9001:2008) Internal auditor and has successfully completedEMS (ISO 14001:2004) lead auditor course. He is also a panel member of the Climate Smart Agriculture program under the Gold Standard.

As a GHG auditor, he has audited a wide variety of projects in different fields such as forestry, renewable energy, metal industries etc. He is a qualified auditor for scopes 14.1 (Forestry) and 1.2 (Renewable Energy). He has worked on a number of distributed energy efficiency and biogas projects including the biogas projects developed by WWF in Nepal, treadle pump projects developed by IDEI and drip irrigation GS project in South India. He was the Team Lead for the first forestry CER issuance from Asia (ITC Forestry Project), Technical Reviewer of first forestry issuance from Africa (Ethiopia), Technical Reviewer of second forestry issuance from South America (Colombia) and Team Lead of first voluntary forestry issuance (AFOLU) from India (Prakash Industries), 2nd forestry issuance from India (MTPL) and validation team member of GIZ forestry project.

Prior to IORA, he was with TÜV Nord as a Lead Assessor of carbon projects (2008-2013) over- seeing Forestry, Carbon services and Sustainable Development business. He was a research Associate at the Institute of Global Warming and Ecological Studies, NOIDA (2007-2008), where he was involved with teaching, training, research and consultancy in the field of climate change and energy.


 

Dr. (Mrs.) Satvant Kaur

Saini – Senior Manager Forestry

Dr. Satvant Kaur Saini is the Senior Manager - Forestry, IORA Ecological Solutions, an expert in the field of Forest Ecology and Environment.

She did her M.Sc. (Zoology) and Ph.D. in Biosciences from Pt. RSU University, Raipur (C.G.). She holds another Master’s degree in Ecology and Environment from SMU as well. She has won the young Scientist award of Madhya Pradesh CST (1989).

She has worked in State Forest Research Institute, Jabalpur, M.P. on various capacities. She has 22 years of research experience and have profound knowledge for more than 17 years in diverse field of forestry research i.e. forest resource assessment in-situ, floral and faunal studies of various PAs, development of sustainable harvesting techniques in natural forests with active community participation, development of a model for rural and tribal livelihood by adopting sustainable harvesting of resources in natural forests, EIA and EMP of various developmental projects.


 

Dr. Santanu Basu

Senior Manager – Forestry & GIS

Dr. Santanu Basu is the Senior Manager, Forestry & GIS, IORA Ecological Solutions, an expert in the field of Remote sensing and GIS.

He did his Ph.D. in Wildlife management from Saurashtra University, Rajkot. He holds Master’s degree in Forest management from Forest research institute.

He has 9 years of progressive experience across a broad range of Forest monitoring especially through GIS and Remote sensing and diverse conservation needs. As a Senior Manager, Forestry & GIS in IORA, he is engaged all digital image processing and digital interpretation of satellite data. Analyzing the remote sensing data to ascertain land cover details, forest cover, forest type, land use change matrix, monitoring and evaluation of changes, assessment of vulnerability and non-spatial database for project planning, implementation and monitoring.

Prior to IORA, he was working as Technical Specialist in RMSI Pvt. Ltd. where his prime include forest inventory data collection, spatial data creation, Land use/cover mapping, Index based mapping, Mapping of landsat images as per ground based crown density classes etc. He has worked on various projects related to remote sensing in various countries viz. Indonesia, Cambodia, Malaysia, Mozambique etc. Apart from all this he has also worked in field of wildlife. He has Identified and monitored forest connectivity and corridors for tigers and elephants in India, created awareness in target areas and developed community based livelihoods to reduce dependency on forest. He has also done radio tracking of tigers for home range estimation, abundance estimation of carnivore and herbivore through camera trapping. During his work in Sariska Tiger reserve he used remote sensing and GIS based approach to develop wildlife management plan and monitored the reintroduced tiger through spatial and ground based approaches.


 

Rashmi Ranjan

Project Manager – Energy

Rashmi holds a PG Diploma in Energy Management from IISWBM - India’s first B-School, Kolkata and is a Gold Medalist in Zoology from SKM University, Jharkhand.

She is experienced in the conceptualization, design, financial analysis and registration of Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) projects. As a Project Manager in IORA, her role involves planning, design and execution of climate change mitigation projects in the clean energy space. She is currently working on developing India’s first Gold Standard Biogas Programme of Activities, India Organic Waste Management Programme (IOWMP). She is working on 10 Small Scale A/R CDM Study Under Uttar Pradesh Participatory Forest Management and Poverty Alleviation Project in collaboration with The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) and Uttar Pradesh Forest Department. The projects aims at restoring degraded forests, augmenting forest resources and improving livelihood for the local forest dependent communities.

She is also engaged in designing one of the first pilot Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Action (NAMA’s) in India for the Renewable Energy Certificate (REC) scheme. Prior to joining IORA, she has worked with the Agrinergy Consultancy Pvt. Ltd., Mumbai, where she successfully registered a number of CDM projects under the UNFCCC.


 

Zainab Hassan

Project Manager – Forestry

Zainab holds a Masters in Environment Management from the Forest Research Institute, Dehradun. She has sound working experience of four years in developing project across various sectors including forestry under the UNFCCC, VCS & Plan Vivo and on developing conceptual frameworks for REDD+ projects. As a Project Manager in IORA, she is involved in the development of various forestry and biodiversity conservation strategies and projects including India’s first REDD+ project. In her forestry project she is engaged in developing several carbon sequestration and emission reduction projects under A/R CDM and REDD+ with USAID, TERI and GIZ. The project aims to conserve forest and produce long-term, verifiable voluntary emission reductions, improve rural livelihood through sustainable management of resources, and help in developing climate change mitigation activities. She has carried out study related to an exploratory “Payments for Agrobiodiversity Conservation Services” model with Bioversity International to use markets to reward conservation and proliferation of Mango diversity in India and in generating livelihood opportunities for poor farmer communities, strengthening multi- stakeholder partnerships in resource management to reduce degradation of biodiversity and reducing climate vulnerability of species.

Prior to joining IORA, she worked with Agrinergy Consultancy Pvt Ltd, Mumbai and Institute of Green Economy, New Delhi.


 

Akhilesh Singh

Manager – Forestry

Akhilesh Singh, Manager - Forestry, IORA Ecological Solutions, has expertise in the field of forest management and evaluations of natural resources. He is Master of Science (M.Sc.) in Forestry (Economics & Management) (2007) from Forest Research Institute Dehradun. He has completed his graduation in Botany (Honors) from Hindu College, University of Delhi. He is also a qualified ISO 9001:2008 quality management systems auditor, qualified for Better Sugarcane Initiative audits and has qualified ICAR- NET for Forestry and Environmental Sciences.

As a Manager - Forestry in IORA, he is engaged in project management for the Jurisdictional REDD program being implemented for the first time in India. He is looking after the technical inputs, field work, coordination and other activities for the Jurisdictional REDD project in the state of Sikkim. He is also involved in the quantification of the drivers of deforestation and forest degradation for the development of the India specific REDD methodology in collaboration with GIZ - India. As a part of his duties, he provides technical inputs, conducts field works, coordination activities as and when required.

Prior to IORA, he was working with Scientific Certification Systems (India) Pvt. Ltd. as Deputy Manager in Natural Resources Division, where he was auditor for the Forest Stewardship Council Forest Management program.


 

Atri Shaw

RS & GIS Manager

Atri Shaw, GIS Manager, IORA Ecological Solutions, an expert in the field of applications of Remote Sensing and GIS for the last seven years. She has done PG in Environment Management (2007) from Forest Research Institute Dehradun. She has done her graduation from Presidency College, Kolkata. She is also a UGC (NET) Fellow and pursuing her PhD in Environment Management from Forest Research Institute Research centre - Indian Institute of Forest Management.

As a GIS Manager in IORA, she is engaged in all digital image processing and digital interpretation of satellite data.

Prior to IORA, she was working with Foundation for Ecological Security as a Senior Project officer in GIS where her prime responsibilities include building spatial data base for FES teams working across seven states of India, integrating & analyzing the spatial & non spatial database for project planning, implementation & monitoring along with extending GIS support to other organizations. She has also worked as a Technical Associate at Forest Survey of India, Dehradun on the Forest Type Mapping Project and as Research Scholar at IIT, Kharagpur and IIFM, Bhopal.


 

Dr. Isha Rana

Forest Manager

Dr. Isha Rana, Forest Manager, IORA Ecological Solutions, an expert in the field of Forestry holds Ph.D in Forestry (Silviculture) (2013) from Forest Research Institute, Dehradun.

As a Forest Manager in IORA, she is mainly engaged in Forest- PLUS Program which includes designing, co-coordinating and carrying out forest resource assessments including biomass surveys, biodiversity surveys, forest type assessments, Analyzing surveys and preparing reports, developing project design documents for forest carbon projects, research to profile forest management trends, data.

Prior to IORA, she was working with Centre on Climate Change under the aegis of State Council for Science, Technology and Environment, Kasumpti, Shimla, Himachal Pradesh as Scientific Professional where her prime responsibility included preparing documents regarding impact of climate change on agriculture, animal diseases and plant diseases. She has also worked on the changing trend of monsoons in Himachal Pradesh. She has also worked as a guest faculty in Forest Training Institute (an institute for front, Chail, Solan, Himachal Pradesh & also worked as Junior Research fellow in Forest Research Institute, Dehradun. Apart from these she has undergone training with forest officers, H.P (2006) to understand their working and provision given to people by them, winter plantation and Nursery practices at Dr. Y.S.P, UHF, Nauni, Solan (H.P)


 

Binu Hada

Project Executive

Binu Hada, Project Executive, IORA Ecological Solutions, is a Master of Science (M. Sc.) in Environmental Studies and Resource Management (2014) from TERI University, Delhi. She has done her graduation in Environmental Sciences from Kathmandu University, Nepal.

As a Project Executive in IORA, she is engaged in activities of Innovations for Forest Resources Management (InFoRM) Program and Forest-PLUS Project such as writing technical reports, field works, data analysis etc.

Prior to IORA, she has worked on Renewable Nepal Project in Kathmandu University as a Research Assistant where her prime duty included performing statistical analysis of socioeconomic data using SPSS software, led a team of five researchers for a week on two occasions for data collection through questionnaire interviews in rural Nepal, database construction and management using Microsoft Access and Excel, organizing seminars, writing reports and coordinating with other agencies involved in the fund.


 


 

Ankit Rawat

Forestry and GIS Coordinator

Mr. Ankit Rawat, Forestry and GIS coordinator, IORA Ecological Solutions, has received a degree in Forestry Science from HNB Garhwal University Uttarakhand in 2010 and master in Geoinformation Science and Earth Observation from University of Twente, Enschede the Netherlands. He worked extensive on ‘community forestry’ in India and South-East Asia particularly in Cambodia. During his master he worked on “Evaluation of protective function of forest against rockfall hazards in Garhwal Himalayas”.

He is working as Forestry and GIS coordinator in IORA, and engaged in multi-stakeholder Forest-PLUS Programme. His main tasks involves quantification of historical baseline emission using remote sensing and GIS, identification of drivers of deforestation and degradation for forest carbon projects.

Prior to IORA, he was working with Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Phnom Penh, Cambodia as community forestry intern, where he accomplished documentation of field manual on Multipurpose forest inventory, support to Climate Change Integrated Development System.


 

Snigdha Mehta

Manager – Partnership

Snigdha Mehta, Partnership Manager, IORA Ecological Solutions, has pursued her Masters in Environmental Studies and Resource Management from TERI University, Delhi.

As a Partnership Manager in IORA, she is engaged in identifying, strategizing and developing new partnerships for IORA projects across government, private and NGO sectors. Prior to IORA, she was working with Project Survival Media as an Engagement Coordinator where she was responsible for conducting research on pressing issues related to climate change along with their sustainable solutions, for client/in-house documentaries and managing end to end process of creating the documentary film.

Snigdha is passionate about promoting sustainable waste management methods to large audience. To achieve this, she encourages and trains people to start composting at household level. Taking this initiative forward at IORA, she collects leftover kitchen waste from neighboring food joints and composts it. She plans to expand this by installing a community based composting unit in near future.

She is also one of the contributors to the Down to Earth magazine.

She is proficient in English and Hindi.


 

Kunal Bharat

Research Associate

Kunal Bharat, Research Associate at IORA Ecological Solutions, graduated from St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai with a degree in Economics Honours in 2012. Due to his deep interest and passion from the environment, he changed the course of his career by pursuing M.Sc. in Environmental Studies and Resource Management from TERI University, New Delhi. He was awarded a DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service) scholarship for his Master’s thesis and was an exchange student to Albert-Ludwigs University Freiberg, Germany for the same.

His background in economics coupled with the knowledge of the environment has given him the skill to think holistically, keeping in mind the three baselines of our world i.e. economy, environment and society. He has developed skill and expertise on subjects like valuation of ecosystem services and its applications, climate change mitigation and adaption, REDD+, economics of climate change, ecological assessment and GIS applications in natural resource management. At IORA, he is engaged in multiple projects utilizing and further building all these skills along with developing expertise in new areas such as environmental finance and system dynamics modelling for forest resource management.

Prior to IORA, he was working with Pragya, an NGO working for the appropriate development of vulnerable communities and sensitive ecosystems of the world. As part of the International Programs Taskforce, he provided support for projects being implemented by Pragya Kenya. He was also a key team member and coordinator for Pragya’s humanitarian flood relief efforts in Jammu & Kashmir, 2014.

He is proficient in English, Hindi and German (Basic communication skill).


 

Kartika Dubey

Manager- CSR

Kartika Dubey, CSR Manager, IORA Ecological Solutions, has pursued her MBA in Buisness Sustainbility (with Marketing and Finance) from TERI University, Delhi.

She graduated from Sri Venkateswara College, Delhi University with a degree in English Honours. Prior to IORA, she interned with PepsiCo India for a period of two months in CSR and Sustainability department. She worked on implementating Companies (Corporate Social Responsibilty Policy) Rules, 2014 in PepsiCo India . She was also team member of PepsiCo India’s HIV Awareness programme.

At IORA, her role is to customize and market various projects and solutions IORA has developed to leading Indian corporates as part of their CSR initiatives. This includes community based energy projects, waste management, forestry conservation projects amongst others.


 

Chandra Kant

Research Associate

Chandra Kant, Research Associate, IORA Ecological Solutions is an expert in the field of Remote Sensing And GIS Applications in the field of forest and ecology for the last four years. He is a Master of Science in Remote Sensing & GIS (2011) from Mahatma Gandhi Chitrakoot Rural University Satna, Madhya Pradesh, India. . He has done his graduation in Physical Sciences (2008) from Atarra PG College affiliated with Bundelkhand University Jhansi, Uttar Pradesh.

As a Remote sensing researcher, he has been involved in a wide variety of projects in different fields such as Remote sensing & GIS, Aviation, and Forestry etc. He has a keen interest and research experience in application of Remote Sensing, GIS and GPS in forest resources management along with other ecological aspects.

As a Research Associate in IORA, he is involved in all Remote sensing and GIS analysis such as processing, interpretation of remotely sensed data and classify the remote sensing data into different LULC classes, forest cover and forest type to analyze the temporal change in landscape for IEMaC and REDD plus projects. Apart from these, assisting in field survey to have knowledge of ground reality. This includes monitoring and evaluation of changes, assessment of vulnerability and non-spatial database for project planning.

Prior to IORA, he was with Uttar Pradesh Remote Sensing applications Centre, Lucknow as a Project Scientist of Forest Stock Mapping And Volume Estimation Project Sponsored By Forest Department of U.P. (Oct 2012 – Jan 2015), the work involved in this project was Classification of Remote sensing data, Forest Density of Different forest Species, Different Types of map Preparation such as Forest Density, Forest Type, Management Map and Reference map Etc.

He has attempted to do a study for permissible height analysis following the guidelines issued by the ‘Ministry of Civil Aviation’, S.O. 84 dated January 14, 2010 and using the emerging Remote sensing & GIS technology in a project developed by Ms Global Coordinates Pvt. Ltd. for the Real estate.

Chandra Kant is proficient in English, and Hindi. He also has working knowledge of Bhojpuri and Bundelkhandi.


 

N.Ravindra

Project Lead

Ravindra, Project Lead, IORA Ecological Solutions is an expert in the field of Agribusiness Management & Market linkages and had worked in both Corporate as well as Development sector. He did his graduation in Agriculture from Annamalai University and Zoology from American College and post-graduation in MBA with specialization in Marketing. Ravindra is also a Certified “Biodynamic Farming expert”.

Prior to IORA, he has worked as Project Manager with European Union & UNDP funded projects in Sierra Leone, West Africa on Livelihoods and had successfully developed Farm & Nonfarm Value chains.

He had also set up quite a few Farmer Producer Companies and Weaver Producer Companies. Worked as Agriculture Marketing & Management Advisor with VSO in Indonesia (Flores islands) supporting 1500 women beneficiaries on sustainable agribusiness management. Done few projects on Vegetable Value chain in Cape Town, South Africa. He has worked with SPIC Fertilizers handling dealer and distributor networks and was Area Manager (South) for Aurov Seeds Ltd., handling the entire dealer network in Tamilnadu, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh States.

Ravindra likes to play chess and he is also a Trekker.


 

Suraj Appaiah Cariappa,

Jr. Governing Specialist/ Policy Analyst

Suraj Appaiah Cariappa, Jr. Governing Specialist/Policy Analyst, IORA Ecological Solutions is a Lawyer by profession and has done his BA, LL.B from the University of Petroleum and Energy Studies, Dehradun, Uttarakhand.

At Iora, his role is to analyze the current Policy structure and Governance framework existing in the sector of Environment and Energy and accordingly prepare reports and analysis of the same for progression and enhancement of the policy framework in Environment and Sustainable Development. He is also conducting policy analysis and research for the Jurisdictional REDD project in the state of Sikkim.

Prior to Iora, he was a practicing Advocate with a litigation firm, and dealt with various matter in Civil Law. As a student of Law, he has studied and researched on various subjects in the Energy and Environment sector and also closely worked with Environmental Lawyers and Firms in the concerned Field. He has side-by-side also worked on Reports and Researches regarding Climate Change and Energy and Environmental sustainability issues currently prevailing.


 

Kanak Sharma

Executive-Administration

Kanak Sharma, Admin executive at IORA Ecological Solutions, graduated from Burdwan University, Bengal.

At IORA, she is providing administrative support and carries out day-to-day office duties. She is always ready to work well on her own. She is detail-oriented professional, comfortable at multi-tasking, with more than 4+ years’ experience in implementing administrative systems, procedures and policies and trained to work dynamically in professional environment. She has an unbeatable track record of maintaining supplies, answering inquiries, maintaining security, logbook and ensuring that office equipment is working properly. Utterly she is dedicated to utilize earned skills in the field of administration by working effectively and consistently.

Prior to IORA, She was working with Hatfield Investigation Pvt. Ltd as a Sr. executive in Bussiness Operations where her prime responsibilities include to solve the administrative problems by coordinating preparation of reports, analyzing data, and identifying solutions. She is always ready to contribute to team effort by accomplishing related results as needed.

She is proficient in English, Hindi, Bengali and Rajasthani.


 

Harish Chandra

Account Executive

Harish Chandra Account Executive, IORA Ecological Solutions is an expert in the field of Journal Lager Accounting.

He did B.Com from Uttarakhand University. He holds anther degree in Accounting from institute of Computer Accountant. He has 4+ year experience in Journal accounting. He managed to prepare financial statements in accordance with accounting standards and timeline.

Prior to IORA, he worked with Augment Food INC, as an Accountant.