The effects of climate change have ramped up in the past few years, with flash floods, raging wildfires and polluted air becoming commonplace in current times. Combating these effects to ensure the survival of our planet should be our top priority in the coming years. But this is impossible without a collaborative effort between all the countries of the world. India is slowly but surely moving towards a more sustainable future and these states have taken a step in the right direction through their green initiatives.
Goa has been a major hub for Indian tourism for years now. But with more people, the weight on the environment has also risen. To combat these adverse effects, Goa has launched various eco-friendly initiatives to maintain their pristine surroundings.
Throughout the state, electric buses have become commonplace to reduce the pollution generated by public transport, allowing for a greener way to get around.
Following the same train of thought, a company called CyclingZens offers electric bikes instead of the standard fuel guzzling ‘scootys’ to make travel easier and cheaper.
Being a hub of marine wildlife, the forest department of Goa has also kept the ecological impact of tourism in mind. They have acquired select pockets of land for the protection of turtles and their nesting sites, even taking the help of locals during hatching season.
Beach clean-up drives
Local residents have also successfully organised several beach clean-up drives to promote the concept of responsible waste disposal, establishing bins for waste segregation and using art and music to draw attention to its efforts. Goa officials have also pledged to be plastic free by 2022, taking steps like banning small plastic bags and straws.
With a slew of environmental initiatives, Chhattisgarh is silently working to do its bit for the environment.
Ban on burning of crop residue
With the serious effects of air pollution looming over our heads, Chhattisgarh has banned the burning of crop residue, a major contributor to our carbon footprint. The state also works with various agencies to educate farmers about eco-friendly alternatives to crop burning.
Achieveing zero waste
The city of Ambikapur has also managed to take a step forward by achieving zero waste. Utilising a robust system of garbage collection and segregation, the waste is separated into organic and inorganic at home, which is then further categorised after collection. Inorganic waste like plastic and electronics are sold for recycling purposes to manufacturers while organic waste is fed to animals or used to produce bio gas and composting, earning the city INR 70 lakh in revenue from the sale of these materials.
Rejuvenating a lake
Not limiting its initiatives to small cities, Raipur has brought back a lake from the brink of drying up, using a prompt awareness campaign with citizens, social organizations and media groups. They also planted over 500 trees in and around the lake, developing a verdant ecosystem for a variety of birds.
Planting trees instead of buildings
The city of Raipur also demolished a swath of government buildings to plant a 19-acre micro forest right in the heart of the city, creating an oxygen-rich zone to balance the pollution from industrial facilities.
Moving towards a renewable future, Gujarat is leading the charge with its solar power initiative to provide electricity in a more sustainable way.
Through careful land management, Gujarat plans to erect solar power plants over their existing canal network that stretches throughout the state. The Sanand Branch Canal has already established a canal-top solar plant that is capable of generating 1.6 million units of clean electricity per year while also preventing 90 lakh litres of water from evaporating.
Solar power for farmers
Empowering themselves with the benefits of solar energy, Dhundi village in Gujarat has established the world’s first solar co-operative, enabling farmers to use clean energy and increase their income. They use solar-powered irrigation pumps to water their fields and have even started selling excess water to supplement their income. Due to large amounts of electricity generation, the farmers have also started selling the excess power generated at INR 7 per unit, often selling 50-60 kWh of energy a day.