New Delhi: Science Express -- a 16-coach train for promoting scientific temper -- is all set to begin its fifth journey on Tuesday, this time to raise awareness about the country`s unique biodiversity.
The `Science Express - Biodiversity Special (SEBS)` will seek to reach out to over a million people and will be stationed at Hyderabad from October 9-19 when the city would host the 11th meeting of the Conference of Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity.
The train will culminate for the year at Gandhinagar on December 22.
A collaboration between the Environment Ministry and the Department of Science & Technology, the train will be flagged off by Environment Minister Jayanthi Natarajan on the occasion of World Environment Day on June 5 from Safdarjung Railway Station here.
Of the 16 coaches comprising the SEBS, eight are dedicated to showcasing biodiversity spread across the various bio-geographical zones -- the Trans-Himalaya and the Himalayas, the Gangetic Plain, North East India, the Desert and Semi-Arid Zone, the Western Ghats, the Deccan Peninsula and the Coasts and Islands.
Three other coaches have exhibits on climate change, energy and water conservation.
During June-December 2012, the train will travel almost 18,000 km, halting for three to four days at each of the 52 locations.
According to the ministry, the exhibition is expected to draw more than 1.5 million visitors, while indirectly it is likely to engage over five million people.
The Science Express began as an Indo-German venture in 2007 and has toured the country four times.