What to expect on this World Environment Day?

Its 5th of June and it’s the 40th anniversary of the World Environment Day (WED). This article provides an overview of what this year’s WED has in store for us.

Its 5th of June and it’s the 40th anniversary of the World Environment Day (WED). This article provides an overview of what this year’s WED has in store for us.

UN selects a theme and a host country every year for World Environment Day in order to increase awareness about burgeoning environmental issues across the globe. Brazil is the host this year and the theme for 2012 is specifically focused at the state of inclusion in the emerging Green Economy.

Titled ‘Green Economy: Does it include you?’ the primary emphasis is on highlighting attention of people to work towards environmentally sustainable economic growth. In this context, Green economy includes all aspects which will help a country embark on the path of low carbon and sustainable growth, such as sustainable energy, resource efficiency, waste management, carbon mitigation, sustainable agriculture etc.

On this World Environment Day we can look forward to actions being taken on multiple fronts including policy reforms, awareness drives, increased public engagement etc. Sustainability Outlook brings to you some key happenings on the World Environment Day.

1.    New Policy for green buildings to be announced soon

A new policy to promote green buildings will be unveiled by the Surat Municipal Corporation (SMC) today. The new policy would include incentives such as fee waivers, additional floor space index (FSI) along with subsidies on plants for the green spaces planning for builders maximizing the use of natural resources in their upcoming projects..

2.    Launch of innovative Science Express-Biodiversity Special

Ministry of Environment and Forests in partnership with the Department of Science & Technology will be running a train ‘Science Express – Biodiversity Special (SEBS)’ from 5th June to 22nd December in order to increase awareness about India’s bio-diversity. 8 out of the 16 coaches of the Biodiversity Special express train will showcase the different bio-geographical zones in the country including - the Trans-Himalaya & the Himalayas, the Gangetic Plain, North East India, theDesert & Semi-Arid Zone, the Western Ghats, the Deccan Peninsula, the Coasts & Islands. The remaining coaches will include exhibits on Climate Change, Energy and Water conservation and Joy of Science lab for students. The train’s journey will begin in Delhi and terminate at Gandhinagar (Gujarat). As per the Ministry, the train is likely get more than 15 lakh visitors and indirectly engage more than 50 lakh people. This initiative has been launched keeping in mind the Conference of the Parties (CoP-11) on the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) being hosted by India in October this year.

3.    Increased engagement of the Civil Society

a)    Launch of 350-Wiser Delhi Local Group

350.org and WISER are launching the 350-Wiser Delhi Local Group as a platform for people to build the movement for climate change and a sustainable future. The Delhi group will focus on events, actions, projects and campaigns in the capital city that can help India move towards a clean energy future.

b)    Signature Campaign with Chintan

To promote awareness against deforestation, a signature campaign is being organized by the NGO-Chintan on the World Environment Day at Select City Mall, Saket (New Delhi). The signatories will pledge to save the environment. The signatories will also have the opportunity to engage in other environment friendly activities such as making pottery and planting saplings.

c)    Mocha Coffee And Recycling

The coffee chain, Mocha is launching a paper recycling initiative on this Environment Day. Under the initiative customers can deposit old papers, including magazines, newspapers, and books which will be sold by the coffee retailer for recycling. In return for their contribution, customers get a free Mocha shake. The retailer will keep its customers updated on the total material collected for recycling.

4.    Increased media coverage

IBN7’s Special telecast on WED

In order to raise awareness about the dismal state of our rivers, especially the Ganges, IBN7  will be telecasting a special day-long programme called ‘Ganga EkKhoj’ through which the channel wishes to highlight the deteriorating condition of the Ganges, reasons behind the increasing pollution of rivers and plausible solutions to the problem.

NDTV’s Greenathon

As part of this environment campaign, NDTV organizes a fund raising event every year to support TERI’s Lighting a Billion Lives initiative which aims at providing solar power to remote rural areas in India which are un-electrified or under-electrified.

5.    Enhanced corporate participation

Standard Chartered Bank along with Indian Development Foundation will be organizing WED event in 6 different locations in India – Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad and Pune. The event would include a green walk and a clean-up drive in the different cities along with awareness campaigns for promoting consciousness for our environment and protecting the earth.

Our Contribution: Catalyzing innovation towards Sustaianability

On the auspices of the World Environment Day, Sustainability Outlook has launched the 2012 edition of the Parivartan Sustainability Leadership Awards. Parivartan Sustainability leadership awards are an annual initiative to recognize and celebrate sustainability innovations in Indian businesses. For more info, please visit www.parivartanawards.in. 

This Environment Day, many steps are being undertaken by different groups be it policy makers, civil society, businesses or media to take India on the path of being a sustainable and green economy. However, it is upto each individual to become conscious of the growing environmental risks faced by our country and to do his /her bit for making it a greener and sustainable economy! As Dr. SuneelPandey from the Centre for Environmental Studies, The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI)) puts it, "In order to pursue a development process that is environmentally sustainable, as a citizen, we need to consciously look inwards to reduce our own environmental footprint."

Image(s) Courtesy:


Document Tag: