Environment

Many key players in the space of Information Technology and Information Technology Enabled Services (IT & ITES) in Chennai are located in OMR, Perungudi, Thoraipakkam, Navalur and Siruseri. Over the past few decades, the number of offices in the area has grown exponentially. With many jobs available, large apartment complexes began to be built to cater to the needs of the people. The population along the IT corridor now runs into lakhs. Unfortunately for the residents, the area is also home to the Perungudi dump yard, one of the city’s two dump yards. Much of the solid waste from all…

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For years, the environment and earth have slowly been decaying, slipping away from our grasp little by little. A few noticed, and many didn't.  The global surface temperature has been measured since 1880 at a network of ground-based and ocean-based sites. Over the last century, the Earth's average surface temperature has risen by about 1⁰C. The eleven warmest years this century have all occurred since 1980, with 2016 being the warmest on record. Coastal regions are getting warmer in summers and colder in winters as the years pass. The average temperature margin between summers and winters is increasing everywhere. Hundreds…

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Tracing the truth behind the claims made by the previous government that "47 lakes had been developed under the Nava Nagarothana scheme at the cost of Rs 317.25 crore”, the author of this series, in a ground report, examines the state of Bengaluru's lakes. In the first part, he provides a detailed insight into the actual condition of three lakes, where rejuvenation was supposedly carried out. These were: Doddakallasandra lake, Kothanur Lake, Chunchaghatta lake, and Yelachenahalli lake. In the second part, the author--who is a birdwatcher, a naturalist, and a passionate conservationist--gives detailed reports on the status of two other lakes: Gowdanapalya…

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For nearly eight to nine months in a year, the mangrove swamps by Thane creek become a sojourn for the seasonal exodus of flamingoes that migrate from Kutch. It is said that Rann of Kutch is the breeding ground and Mumbai, the feeding ground of these majestic birds. Mumbai Metropolitan Region has two IBAs (Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas) in Sewri Mudflat and Thane Creek. According to Deepak Apte, former Director at Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS), these areas sustain about 70,000 waders and 1,20,000 flamingoes during peak ‘wintering’ months. These hotspots are well-known, but there are lesser known ‘sanctuaries’…

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Editor's Note: The previous BJP government had announced its Bengaluru Mission 2022, under which 25 lakes were identified and funds were granted by the BBMP and CM’s Nava Nagarothana scheme in December 2020. Three years after the announcement, with an eye on the Karnataka Elections 2023 on January 25th, the BJP government claimed in an advertisement that “47 lakes had been developed under the Nava Nagarothana scheme at the cost of 317.25 crores.” The reality, however, is in contrast to the claims, as a citizen found out. The author, a birdwatcher, a naturalist, and a passionate conservationist did the rounds…

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Bengaluru is now increasingly witnessing the combined effects of climate change and rapid urbanisation in varied forms. Be it the heat island effect, or increased intensity of rainfall over a shorter duration of time, flooding different city areas. Yet, climate responsive strategies largely remain obscured in developmental strategies as well as governance models. Impact on informal settlements The harshest brunt of this situation is borne by people living in informal settlements across Bengaluru. The city has almost 2000+ slums spread across, with only 25% of these slums having access to some basic services. These settlements are constructed using heat-absorbing materials…

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Despite the previous government’s claims of developing 47 lakes in Bengaluru at the cost of Rs 317.25 crore, under the Nava Nagarothana scheme, with an additional Rs 200 crore being sanctioned to restore 17 lakes, the process of lake maintenance is shrouded in issues. Chief among these is the lack of transparency and access to information, poor enforcement of laws, and above all, absence of public consultation.  Environmentalists and citizen groups have worked against these odds to protect lakes, but questions remain on why public consultation is not duly followed and why lakes continue to be encroached upon and overflow…

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Across Bengaluru, lakes are being dug up, drained and desilted for development. BBMP is in the process of developing 67 lakes at the cost of Rs 200 crore. But the civic agency and the government have kept citizens out of the process. Citizen groups, residents and environmentalists across the city have expressed concern. They fear their neighbourhood lakes are being encroached upon or turned into soup bowl- shaped lakes that are not as biodiverse. There are fears that limited public funds are being wasted on unnecessary works. Lack of public consultation Lakes in Bengaluru are essentially commons, meant to be…

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In the past few years, the proposed Metro-3 car shed and subsequent tree felling in the Aarey forest has made headlines and people's fight to save the remaining trees continues even now. Historically, as Mumbai’s concrete jungle around the forested area exploded along with rising pollution levels, Aarey emerged as the city’s oasis for biodiversity and its ‘last green lungs’. It is a popular destination for cyclists, joggers, bird watchers, nature enthusiasts, and picnickers looking for a few hours of nature's company. According to environmentalist Stalin D, in the earlier days, the concept of institutions was not a concrete jungle.…

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As I write this article, we are in the middle of May which began with unseasonal rainfall occurring in the plains of the Ganges and Yamuna rivers. There was snow in the mountainous regions of Uttarakhand. Since then, the sun is out and the skies are clear. But uncertainty remains of what the future holds, especially as the monsoon season sets in. This situation is worrisome, not only from a health perspective but also from an agricultural standpoint. Before moving forward, it is vital to look at the weather patterns from this winter to now. The weather has been hotter than…

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