Friday, March 22Delhi Greens Blog: Greening the World, One Post at a Time!

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Featured articles and essays on global environmental issues.

Top Five Reasons Why You Must Act to Save the Tiger

Top Five Reasons Why You Must Act to Save the Tiger

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1. Tiger Supports Livelihood Tourism is the world's biggest industry. On the ecotour front, the tiger is a star attraction for not just the Indian tourists but also for the people coming from other countries. There are foriegners who come to India only to have a glimpse of the tiger and then there are others who return more than once for another such opportunity. The look in the eyes of a canter that has just come out of a National Park after sighting a tiger is very different from the look and feel of a canter that could not sight any. This eventually impacts the tourist influx thus impacting everyone from the tour companies to the local tour guides. A healthy tiger population thus supports livelihoods as well. 2. Tiger Protects Genetic Diversity Tiger is an umbrella species. It's

Protecting from the unknown

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The recent total solar eclipse episode is a once in a life time opportunity for any living being on this Planet. The next one is 105 years into the future. The entire audio visual media attention was on it. Every channel covered it in two very distinct ways. Each channel had atleast one scientist covering it and giving comments on the eclipse, how it occurs and its rarity. Along with this there would be images of hundreds of thousands of people who had gathered on the river side of Allahabad and Gaya. These are religious places with people taking the ‘holy dip’ in the river Ganga after the event. The basic questions that were posed by the event were the same for which both the systems of knowledge tried to provide answers using their systems of beliefs. Namely: Is this event unique or

In Life There Are Problems

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Pillar 67 of the Metro line broke causing a crash on 12 July 09. It had developed a crack in March and after placing 400 tonne launcher on the repaired pillar, the cantilever crashed. Subsequently out of the four cranes that were commissioned to clear up - three of them boom snapped. Collapsed span in the construction of the Delhi Metro Rail is a problem for the media, for the politicians, for the architects etc. In short, all of us living in the city who have wished for the Metro Rail to be successful are now apprehensive about it. This is not to say that the collapse of the pillar is not to be investigated and corrective actions taken. I am talking about the media panic and the political drama that followed. In the image of an ideal city of Delhi there is no space for problems. Del
City Needs Trees?

City Needs Trees?

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An earlier blog talked about exotic species of trees that have been planted in Delhi as a result of planned actions by British. Subsequently trees planted by MCD (Municipal Corporation of Delhi) on minor roads are not so well planned. Do these trees have any use in cities? Here is my observation. Delhi as a city has these very interesting weekly phenomenon, like all major cities in India. Every locality has a dedicated day of the week where there is a weekly market held that usually starts around 5 pm and goes on till 8.30 or 9 pm. It usually coincides with the special day dedicated to the local deity to be visited by the local communities. On this day the formal shops selling things are closed and the footpaths and sides of the roads are occupied by the informal traders selling
Tiger Tiger…Dimming Out

Tiger Tiger…Dimming Out

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What does it take to save the tiger? Tiger - India's National animal and a flagship-umbrella species which facilitates the conservation of a large number of other species and that of our forests and wildlife resources. While this may answer the query of some tribal activist and several others on why the big cat should be saved on a priority basis, the larger question is what does it take to save the tiger? Clearly, Project Tiger has not been able to do much except save raise awareness on the need to save the tiger. Those who believed that the tiger will have to co-exist with the tribal people must be convinced by now that the tiger neither casts a vote nor selects civil society committees and will not abide. Neither fencing our National Parks (mainly a barrier for the tiger, sin
Cultural Garbage

Cultural Garbage

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An earlier blog post dealt with the concept of garbage. The term is a function and reality of man-made systems. The word has existed since the very beginning and is also part of cultural history. The post referred to the term garbage as waste generated from the use of raw material needed for cooking and living our everyday lives. The residual - garbage - impacts the physical 'environmental' quality of our lives. Here is a possibility that it may also refer to a part of socio-religious city space. Thus defined, garbage will be identified in quite different ways and would refer to built spaces in a city, with very different visible outcomes. Cities tend to grow in concentric circles. Delhi is no exception. We have reference to our city being built nine times over and every time it ...
Of Being Tactful, For the Sake of Human Dignity

Of Being Tactful, For the Sake of Human Dignity

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The Western Yamuna Canal Overlooking the Delhi Metro: If you thought the Indian Railways track was the world's longest public toilet, wait till you visit this. Cleaning the Yamuna needs a plan that ensures that waste water generated in the city does not reach back into the river untreated. The technology needed to operate these facilities is not very difficult, nor is the O and M costs very high, if there is a committed agency that wants it to happen for 40 percent of the JJ slum dwellers. Ever considered that the ultimate form of protest of the weak is to do what they are told not to do by people in authority, by doing so they have the satisfaction of being noticed and not ignored by authority. The ultimate weapon of the weak is instead of protesting vocally, they resisting domina...
Cleaning the Yamuna

Cleaning the Yamuna

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Yamuna River passing through the city of Delhi is polluted and every one is concerned. There is money spent on it. 1200 cr. worth of efforts were spent on Yamuna Action Plan Phase I and Yamuna Action Plan Phase II on creating the STP and physical infrastructure in treating the waste water that gets generated per day in the city. Setting up of Sewage Treatment plants along 42 towns and cities in the up steam of the river was part of the YAP I, while the Phase II is mainly focused on Delhi Metropolitan Region with Delhi Jal Board managing the project. Serious deficiencies and back log in sanitation and waste water services have resulted in the dwindling of water flow and is 80% of the source of ‘non point pollution’ in the river. The usual rhetoric is to blame the victims: Of the tota
Garbage

Garbage

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World Environment Day and the shades of ‘Green’ has been the talk of this blog over the last week. Ever considered the non green, ‘garbage’ part of environment? What is it that we know of this phenomenon? As much as garbage is a function and reality of man-made systems, it has always been a cultural fact and is, since the very beginning, part of the cultural history. Garbage is all pervasive in that each cultural system, or sub-system such as art, society, religion, including sociocultural and physical environment defines it, with its own logic, category and reality. Thus, garbage is defined and identified in quite different ways by different systems. This means that anything can be considered, or becomes garbage (or more appropriately 'waste') under certain systemic conditions.
Shades of Green: An Environment Day Cover Story!

Shades of Green: An Environment Day Cover Story!

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To celebrate World Environment Day and to keep the momentum going, Time Out Delhi's recent (June) edition has brought together the whole palette of green: hardliners, pragmatists, those who fight in the courts and those who make money off their green beliefs. The question it asks is, where do you fit in? Click here to Subscribe to Time Out Delhi The middle path That environmental degradation has a human cost is by now universally accepted. That the eco-movement may have one as well is something that those walking the middle path strive to keep in mind, says Avtar Singh. Practical environmentalism. Thank 24-year-old Govind Singh of Delhi Greens for, if not coining the term, then at least bringing it to this magazine’s attention. As far as Singh is concerned, that phrase encapsulates