Environment News Magazine February 2019
Mahila Congress Holds Save the Tree Campaign in Delhi
Main Stories in This Issue - Health Emergency in Polluted Delhi - National Clean Air Program in India - Steps to Promote Electric Vehicles - Join the Green Group of Delhi - Water Bottle to Save the Environment - Real Estate Sector and Global Warming
- Nestlé Reusable Ice Cream Packaging - Circular Economy Award - Stop FAR Construction and Pollution - Environmental Law - EU Green Week - Complete a Clean Air Marathon
Clean Climate: Environment News Magazine by RMN Foundation. February 2019. Page 1 of 16
Govt Must Declare Health Emergency in Polluted Delhi: Mahila Congress While the corrupt authorities in Delhi are not taking any steps to tackle pollution, the distressed citizens have no other option but to leave the city.
As the government has completely failed to check rising levels of pollution in India’s capital New Delhi, a group of women have urged Delhi Government to declare public health emergency in Delhi. The Priyadarshini cell of Delhi Mahila Congress said on January 13 that the government should declare public health emergency in Delhi due to severe pollution.
Mahila Congress Holds Save the Tree Campaign in Delhi. Photo: Mahila Congress
“Delhi Mahila Congress is protesting against the complete apathy and lack of action by the central, state, and municipal authorities to control pollution,” said Sharmistha Mukherjee, president, Delhi Mahila Congress. While the corrupt authorities in Delhi are not taking any steps to tackle pollution, the distressed citizens have no other option but to leave the city. A survey reveals that many people are running away from Delhi like refugees or Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs). As a result, India is falling in the category of countries with large IDP populations – such as Syria, Colombia, Iraq, Congo, Sudan, Nigeria, and Somalia. An interactive tool on the Breathe Life 2030 website shows a Particulate Matter (PM) 2.5 level of 143 micrograms per cubic metre (annual mean) in India’s capital New Delhi. This is
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over 14 times over the WHO safe level of 10 µg/m3. Simply put, the people of Delhi are inhaling poison from the air. According to The Economist, this polluted environment does not just make life unpleasant for a lot of Indians, but it kills them. Recent estimates put the annual death toll from breathing PM 2.5 alone at 1.2 million to 2.2 million a year. The lifespan of Delhi-dwellers is shortened by more than ten years, says the University of Chicago.
India Launches National Clean Air Programme in Polluted Delhi The NCAP will be a mid-term, five-year action plan with 2019 as the first year.
In order to control increasing air pollution in India, the environment minister Harsh Vardhan launched National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) in New Delhi. “Collaborative and participatory approach involving relevant central ministries, state governments, local bodies, and other stakeholders with focus on all sources of pollution forms the crux of the programme,” Harsh Vardhan said.
Dr. Harsh Vardhan lighting the lamp at the launch of the National Clean Air Programme (NACP) in New Delhi on January 10, 2019. Photo: PIB
He informed that the tentative national level target of 20%–30% reduction of PM2.5 and PM10 concentration by 2024 is proposed under the NCAP, taking 2017 as the base year for the comparison of concentration. Clean Climate: Environment News Magazine by RMN Foundation. February 2019. Page 3 of 16
“Overall objective of the NCAP is comprehensive mitigation actions for prevention and control of air pollution besides augmenting the air quality monitoring network across the country and strengthening the awareness and capacity building activities,” the minister added. Amitabh Kant, CEO of NITI Aayog, was also present at the launch. He said that NCAP is a path-breaking initiative and a critical program, as it addresses one of the most alarming challenges of urbanization which is air pollution. “Today cities occupy just 3% of the land, but contribute to 82% of GDP and responsible for 78% of carbon dioxide emissions; cities though are engines of growth and equity but they have to be sustainable and it is in this context that NCAP being a very inclusive program holds special relevance,” said Amitabh Kant. The NCAP will be a mid-term, five-year action plan with 2019 as the first year.
LLM in Environmental Law Offered Online It will include courses on Climate Change, Energy Law, Environmental Law, Wildlife Law, and Public Lands.
Lewis & Clark Law School is offering its Environmental, Natural Resources, and Energy Law LLM via distance-learning, and is now accepting applications for the Fall 2019 Cohort. The online course builds on the law school's post-JD (Juris Doctor degree) environmental law Master's program, which is designed for attorneys interested in increasing their knowledge, and who want to more effectively practice in today's global legal environment. Lewis & Clark's LLM will include courses on Climate Change, Energy Law, Environmental Law, Wildlife Law, and Public Lands. The courses will integrate advanced online learning methods, such as self-paced and interactive video lectures and virtual online office hours each week with faculty, with the ability for students to discuss and collaborate online.
Steps to Promote Electric Vehicles in India
The Phase-1 of FAME Scheme is, at present, available up to 31st March 2019 and is available for all registered electric vehicles with lithium ion batteries.
The Government of India has granted exemption to Battery Operated Transport Vehicles and Transport Vehicles running on Ethanol and Methanol fuels from requirement of permit. Clean Climate: Environment News Magazine by RMN Foundation. February 2019. Page 4 of 16
Ethanol fuel is ethyl alcohol, the same type of alcohol found in alcoholic beverages, used as fuel. It is most often used as a motor fuel, mainly as a biofuel additive for gasoline. Ethanol is commonly made from biomass such as corn or sugarcane. Methanol is also an alternative fuel for internal combustion and other engines, either in combination with gasoline or directly ("neat"). While ethanol is less toxic and has higher energy density, methanol is less expensive to produce sustainably and is a less expensive way to reduce the carbon footprint. Methanol is from hydrocarbon or renewable resources, in particular natural gas and biomass respectively. In order to promote electric vehicles, the Government of India has notified for retro-fitment of hybrid electric system or electric kit to vehicles and has specified the type approval procedure of electric hybrid vehicles. The Government has notified that the registration mark for Battery Operated Vehicles is to be on a plate with green background. Further, for the promotion of electric mobility in the country, the Government had launched Phase-I of the FAME India Scheme [ Faster Adoption of Electric (& Hybrid) Vehicles in India]. This was initially for a period of 2 years and has subsequently been extended till 31st March 2019.
Lt. Governor of Delhi Anil Baijal flags off smart e-rickshaws in Dwarka for metro rail commuters. Photo: LG Office
All electric and hybrid vehicles, including public transport, registered under the scheme are being incentivized under the Demand Creation focus area of this scheme. The Phase-1 of FAME Scheme is, at present, available up to 31st March 2019 and is available for all registered electric vehicles with lithium ion batteries.
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Ministry of Power has issued a policy on charging infrastructure and has issued a notification clarifying that charging electric vehicles will be a service, not a sale of electricity. The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has commercialized indigenously developed lithium ion battery technology and has selected 14 companies for transfer of technology. The NITI Aayog has taken an initiative to provide a Model Concessionaire Agreement (MCA) document for introducing Electric-Bus Fleet in Cities for Public Transportation on Public-Private Partnership (PPP) mode on Operational Expenditure (per km basis) Model rather than paying upfront capital cost. Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs has made amendment in the Urban and Regional Development Plans Formulation and Implementation (URDPFI) guidelines to provide for electric vehicle charging stations in private and commercial buildings. Recently, the Lt. Governor (LG) of Delhi Anil Baijal had flagged off an array of smart e-rickshaws in Dwarka for metro rail commuters. According to an LG office communique, the launch of e-rickshaws is the first and significant step of Delhi Metro service toward pollution-free green and clean Delhi.
EU Green Week to Focus on Environmental Laws The opening event will have a particular prominence, setting the tone for the Week's debates.
Environmental laws – if implemented properly – can improve water and air quality. They also protect nature and encourage recycling and waste management.
The next edition of EU Green Week (13-17 May 2019) will focus on the implementation of environmental laws. EU Green Week 2019 will include events across Europe, with the
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official opening event on 13 May in one of the Member States and a high-level summit in Brussels from 15 to 17 May. The opening event will have a particular prominence, setting the tone for the Week's debates. The closing of Green Week will take place at the end of the Brussels Conference and will showcase the political conclusions from the Week.
Join the Green Group of Delhi
You are invited to join the Green Group as a member by filling in a simple online form. You can also donate to support the activities of the Group.
The major activities of the Green Group of Delhi are around environment protection to save the environment from air pollution, dust pollution, noise pollution, water pollution, etc. in order to minimize the effect of pollution on Climate Change.
Children demonstrating in the streets of New Delhi so that the Indian government and Delhi government should protect them from dust, noise, and air pollution. Campaign and Photo by Rakesh Raman
This is a non-political, non-partisan Group. The activities of the Group are being managed by its members and volunteers. Formed in August 2017, the Group had begun its journey from Dwarka, which is the largest residential suburb in Asia with a population of more than 1 million. However, now it covers other parts of India’s capital New Delhi, which is among the most polluted and the dirtiest cities of the world.
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The Group holds mass awareness campaigns, environment protection education programs, intellectual discussions, and so on. It also coordinates with the government and law-enforcement agencies in Delhi to create a healthy living environment for people. You are invited to join the Green Group of Delhi as a member by filling in a simple online form. You can also donate to support the activities of the Group. People from the entire city of Delhi can join the Green Group as members. More than 1 person from a family can become the member by providing their details in separate forms.
Arun Jaitley Opens Electric Vehicle Charging Station in Delhi The Department of Expenditure has also issued an office memorandum for all the government offices in Delhi / NCR to switch to electric vehicles.
Marking the adoption of e-mobility, Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance, Government of India has signed an agreement with Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL), an entity under Ministry of Power for deployment of 15 electric vehicles (EVs) for their officers.
Arun Jaitley flagging off the e-vehicle, at the inauguration of the e-vehicle and charging station in North Block, New Delhi on January 9, 2019. Photo: PIB
Also, 28 charging points (24 slow charging points, 4 fast charging points) have been installed at North Block in Delhi for charging these vehicles. With these 15 EVs, Department Clean Climate: Environment News Magazine by RMN Foundation. February 2019. Page 8 of 16
of Economic Affairs is expected to save over 36,000 litres of fuel every year and will also lead to a reduction of over 440 tonnes of CO2 annually. Speaking on the occasion, the Union Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs, Arun Jaitley, said, “Electric mobility, is an attractive, sustainable, and profitable solution to mitigate the climate change and to reduce the risk posed by vehicular emission to public health. EVs have the potential to support India’s growth by enhancing manufacturing, job creation, and technical capabilities. We are glad to be a part of India’s mission of rapid adoption of e-mobility.” The Department of Expenditure has also issued an office memorandum for all the government offices in Delhi / NCR to switch to electric vehicles. The government believes that the adoption of electric vehicles will reduce dependence on oil imports and promote power capacity addition in India thereby enhancing energy security of the country. It will further reduce GHG (greenhouse gas) emissions from the transport sector and also reduce the impact of pollution level in the cities.
Appeal for Donations RMN Foundation is a humanitarian organization that was formed in May 2015 as an educational and public charitable Trust for the benefit of humanity at large. It is registered with the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi at New Delhi, India. Currently, all the activities of RMN Foundation are being managed single-handedly (without any support) by RMN Foundation founder Rakesh Raman who had left his job a few years ago to run this charity. As RMN Foundation has embarked upon some major humanitarian projects during the past over 3 years, now it needs a significant amount of funds in the form of donations to expand the scope of its activities. Individual Indian donors can help RMN Foundation with their contributions using the following bank details: Bank Name: ICICI Bank Bank Branch: HL Square, Plot No. 6, Sector 5 (MLU), Dwarka, New Delhi 110 075 Account Number: 025005004368 Account Name: RMN Foundation Type of Account: Current IFSC Code: ICIC0000250 You can click here to donate with PayPal, credit card, or bank account.
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Download Previous Issues of Clean Climate November 2018
European Commission Wins Circular Economy Award A circular economy is an industrial system that is restorative or regenerative by intention and design.
The World Economic Forum (WEF) has recognized the European Commission as a champion in the circular economy. This is a recognition of the work done to protect the environment and reduce greenhouse gas emissions while delivering opportunities for jobs, growth, and investment.
Photo: European Commission
According to WEF, a circular economy is an industrial system that is restorative or regenerative by intention and design. It replaces the end-of-life concept with restoration, shifts towards the use of renewable energy, eliminates the use of toxic chemicals, which impair reuse and return to the biosphere, and aims for the elimination of waste through the superior design of materials, products, systems, and business models.
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Fressko Water Bottle to Save the Environment Estimates suggest that more than 8 million tons of plastic is dumped in the sea each year.
Fressko, an Australian company that creates premium glass and bamboo-encased stainless steel flasks and infusers, is offering an environment-friendly water bottle. The company says it has created a sustainable, reusable alternative to plastic, rubber or paper cups. "We founded our company and made our flasks to encourage the use of products that are reusable and versatile but are also very stylish," said Hayley Culley, marketing director for Fressko.
Fressko Water Bottle
According to the company, these containers are 100 percent BPA free and designed for durability and ease of use. BPA or Bisphenol-A is a chemical used to produce reusable plastic products.
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Fressko glass flasks, which keep beverages cold for up to 12 hours, or hot for up to half that time, and the bamboo containers, which keep coffee hot for 6-8 hours, are offered as the alternatives for eco-concerned consumers who do not want to pollute the ocean with more plastic products. Estimates suggest that more than 8 million tons of plastic is dumped in the sea each year. "The water bottle industry is flooded with disposable plastic products which are harming our oceans," Culley said. "Fressko flasks are designed to endure the test of time." The company says all Fressko flasks are leak proof.
Nestlé Debuts Reusable Ice Cream Packaging
With the launch of Loop, Häagen-Dazs is debuting a reusable stainless steel double-walled ice cream container.
Nestlé's Häagen-Dazs brand has announced a new service in partnership with global recycling organization TerraCycle that will provide a first-of-its-kind home delivery service to consumers called Loop. Loop will enable consumers to responsibly enjoy Häagen-Dazs and other household favorite foods and personal care products in customized, durable packaging that are collected, cleaned, refilled, and re-used—all from the consumer's front door step.
Nestle Haagen-Dazs Strawberry Reusable Container. Photo: Nestlé
Announced at the World Economic Forum, Loop was created to provide a solution to one of the world's most pressing environmental issues: waste. Häagen-Dazs, alongside brands Clean Climate: Environment News Magazine by RMN Foundation. February 2019. Page 12 of 16
from other major CPG industry partners, examined its supply chain to identify ways to innovate in packaging, production, and distribution. "Loop provides a much-needed innovation platform, challenging companies to take a fresh look at our value chains and integrate reusable product packaging as part of our efforts to waste-reduction," said Laurent Freixe, Nestlé CEO for Zone Americas. "Nestlé is proud to be a founding investor and partner of Loop. It's a critical part of our commitment to work with consumers to protect our planet for future generations." With the launch of Loop, Häagen-Dazs is debuting a reusable stainless steel double-walled ice cream container, designed by Nestlé's global research and development group in Bakersfield, CA, that elevates the consumer experience and keeps the ice cream at optimal condition. Consumers shopping for Häagen-Dazs on Loop can select from non-dairy options (Chocolate Salted Fudge, Coconut Caramel, and Mocha Chocolate Cookie) or from traditional favorites (Vanilla or Strawberry) during the New York City pilot of the program, scheduled to launch in the first half of 2019. Nestlé is the world's leading food and beverage company.
India’s Real Estate Sector Causes Pollution and Global Warming It is critical that India adopts a holistic and sustainable approach to real estate development
According to a new report published by the World Economic Forum, the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA) predicts that future increases in the world’s urban population will be concentrated in just a few countries. The report reveals that India, China, and Nigeria are together expected to account for 35% of the projected growth in the world’s urban population until 2050. Of these three countries, the absolute growth in urban population is projected to be the highest in India. In terms of sheer numbers, according to the report, the largest urban transformation of the 21st century is thus happening in India, and the Indian real estate and infrastructure industry is a key contributor to this growth. The report says that India’s real estate sector is expected to contribute 13% to the country’s GDP by 2025 and reach a market size of $1 trillion by 2030. However, the environmental footprint of the Indian real estate industry is also mounting. Buildings in India account for 40% energy use, 30% raw material use, 20% water use, and 20% land use; they also generate 30% of solid waste and 20% of water effluents.
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While construction activity is continuing in localities where people live, its pollution is causing deaths and serious, incurable diseases to the people of Delhi.
The sector is responsible for 24% of India’s annual CO2 emissions, contributing to global warming and poor air quality. It is therefore critical that India adopts a holistic and sustainable approach to real estate development, the report suggests.
Breathelife Challenge: Complete a Clean Air Marathon The goal is to cover 7 million kms for the 7 million lives lost to air pollution each year.
You need not run, though. Just commit to cycling, walking, or using public transport for the distance of a marathon (42.2 km/26.2 miles).
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For many, this is as few as 2-4 trips to and from your place of work or a nearby destination.
Benefits Save Money: Reduce fuel costs to save you money each month. Improve Health: Keep fit and healthy by building physical activity into your travel. Travel Mindfully: Enjoy a stress-free journey and avoid traffic and parking hassles. The goal is to cover 7 million kms for the 7 million lives lost to air pollution each year. This is the equivalent of crossing the earth 150 times and reducing emissions by over 40 tons of CO2.
Stop FAR Construction and Pollution
If you want to get any such construction stopped, you can complain to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB).
You must know that FAR (Floor Area Ratio) construction in occupied housing societies is totally illegal because it spreads dust and noise pollution and further increases air pollution. Currently, the air in Delhi has an annual average of 122 µg/m3 of PM2.5* particles [*PM 2.5 concentrations measured in micrograms of particles per cubic meter of air (µg/m3)]. That’s 12.2 times of the WHO safe level. This is an extremely dangerous level of pollution and besides other pollution-control measures the government regularly bans construction activity. When the ban on construction is lifted for a few days, only essential construction (such as construction of hospitals, schools, roads, bridges, etc.) is allowed. The ban from avoidable construction such as FAR construction in occupied housing societies and house renovations can never be lifted because air is dangerously polluted in Delhi throughout the year. While massive corruption is happening, Delhi Development Authority (DDA), Registrar Cooperative Societies (RCS), Delhi Fire Service (DFS), and Delhi Urban Art Commission (DUAC) are among the most corrupt departments in Delhi that are allowing FAR construction. You can click here to read the report. If you want to get any such construction stopped, you can complain to the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), which is a statutory organization of the Government of India. It also allows you to complain through its social media accounts and the Sameer App. Clean Climate: Environment News Magazine by RMN Foundation. February 2019. Page 15 of 16
Meet the Editor The editor of this environment news magazine Rakesh Raman is a national award-winning journalist and social activist. Besides working at senior editorial positions with leading media companies, he was writing an exclusive edit-page column regularly for The Financial Express (a daily business newspaper of The Indian Express Group). Nowadays, for the past about 8 years, he has been running his own global news services on different subjects. He also has formed a free Education and Career Counselling Center for deserving children at a poor J.J. Colony in Dwarka, New Delhi under his NGO – RMN Foundation. He runs an exclusive community-driven anti-corruption social service “Clean House” to help the suffering residents of Delhi raise their voice against the growing corruption and injustice. He also creates and distributes a number of digital publications that cover areas such as technology, law, environment, education, corruption and transparency. He has created a comprehensive online information service to educate the Indian voters for the upcoming Lok Sabha election scheduled to happen in 2019. Earlier, he had been associated with the United Nations (UN) through United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) as a digital media expert to help businesses use technology for brand marketing and business development.
Collaboration for Environment Content Project The Clean Climate environment news magazine is being published by RMN Foundation. It is being circulated among top government departments, environment protection organizations, colleges / universities, law-enforcement agencies, civil society organizations, social activists, and others in India and abroad. RMN Foundation is looking for sponsors and collaborators across the world who can join hands with us to expand the environment content activity around Clean Climate initiative. Contact
Rakesh Raman Founder RMN Foundation 463, DPS Apts., Plot No. 16, Sector 4, Dwarka, Phase I New Delhi 110 078, INDIA Contact by email Clean Climate: Environment News Magazine by RMN Foundation. February 2019. Page 16 of 16
The monthly magazine covers local and international environment news and issues to engage with different stakeholders who are trying to prot...
Published on Feb 5, 2019
The monthly magazine covers local and international environment news and issues to engage with different stakeholders who are trying to prot...