Environment

Extensive coverage of urban environmental issues and the climate crisis as experienced in our cities through a combination of reports, analyses, interviews and commentaries. Focus areas include waste management, air and water pollution, protection of open spaces and water bodies, and the overall impact of climate change on urban communities. The articles explore solutions from a policy as well as citizen engagement angle.

Tall fences meet the eyes before one steps into the Sarakki lake premises. Most of the lake is currently dry. One can see the tractors busy removing silt from the lake bed. Walking around the lake can be unpleasant, as there are no walking paths currently and the surface is uneven. Garbage is sprawled across a certain section of the lake, and remnants of burnt garbage is present. Green patches of wetlands in the lake area stand out in the otherwise dry lake. "Birds have already started to come back to the Sarakki lake," says Professor K S Bhat, with a…

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Like every year, Lalbagh is hosting flower show this year as well. The theme is Mahatma Gandhi's 150th Birth Anniversary. Bengaluru Metro Rail Corporation Ltd has introduced return journey paper tickets for a flat price of Rs 30. One can travel from Lalbagh Metro station to any other stations at this fare, between 10 am to 8 pm, on January 25th, 26th and 27th. The tickets will be available at all metro stations between 8 am to 6 pm. The press note from BMRCL explains it: Like every year, our reader Srinivasan Subramaniam has shared the photos from the flower…

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The Tata Mumbai Marathon 2019, held on January 20th, saw a record 46,414 runners take to the streets. Even as marathons and other runs across the the country have seen increased participation over the last few years, the spotlight on their environmental footprint has also become stronger in its glare. Waste management champions have long been emphasising the need for more responsible organisation of such events and a petition initiated by Shilpi Sahu, calling for the greening of the Mumbai marathon, received 114,000 signatures over a year.** Before the start of the event, the organisers of the Mumbai marathon, Procam…

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Bangalore International Centre in collaboration with Citizen Matters and Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy, had organised 'Right to breathe- Fixing Bengaluru’s Air', a discussion under Bengaluru Solution Series, on January 11th. This was the second installment of the Bengaluru Solution Series. The panel for the discussion comprised of Randeep D, Indian Administrative Officer and Special Commissioner - Solid Waste Management, BBMP, Anjali Saini, a member of Whitefield Rising, Pawan Mulukutla, Bosch India and Shashank Atreya, a Research Fellow at Vidhi Centre for Legal Policy. The panel was moderated by Meera K, Founder, Citizen Matters. The quality of Bengaluru’s air is…

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In the ongoing Amsterdam Light Festival, illuminating the city’s waterway, a Serbian artist duo’s installation of an LED version of Vincent Van Gogh’s iconic painting ‘The Starry Night’ has drawn attention to the growing menace of light pollution in urban areas. 7000 kilometres away, in India’s commercial capital Mumbai, Nilesh Desai is steadily working on a public interest litigation on light pollution-disturbance due to excessive, inappropriate and misdirected artificial lights. For the last couple of years, Desai, who holds a day job in the information technology sector, has been fighting against the excessive and obtrusive glare of floodlights in his neighbourhood. He has fired…

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This article is part of a special series: Air Quality in our Cities Chennai residents woke up to choking weather on Bhogi morning, as thick smog covered the skyline post the regular ritual of burning garbage, old furniture and tyres in the city. The air quality indicators, within permissible levels till 4 am in the morning, shot up to hazardous levels and remained severe till at least 9 am on Monday, January 14th. Already reeling under unabated industrial pollution, Ennore was among the worst hit areas during the Bhogi festival, as PM 2.5 levels here soared up to 640 µg/m3 between…

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City transport scene The European Investment Bank and Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank have agreed to lend €500 million and €300 million respectively to the Bangalore Metro Rail Corporation Limited (BMRCL) to execute the Gottigere-Nagawara line under Phase II of the project. A proposal to realign the Metro line to the airport through Hebbal junction was approved by the Karnataka cabinet.  The state cabinet also approved the proposal for four suburban railway corridors that will have 81 stations, on a total route length of 160.50km. TenderSURE work is set to begin on K.G. Road in Gandhinagar and Margosa Road in Malleswaram and…

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From vehicular emissions to garbage burning, to dust on the streets and industrial smoke, there are many facets to air pollution in Bengaluru. Karnataka government allocated Rs 96 crores in last budget to monitor air pollution across the state in its budget for the first time in 2018, but the progress of work remains unknown. This winter season where the temperature has dipped up to 6 degrees in some areas, has shown that the quality of city's air is declining and much needs to be done to improve it. A recent report published by Climate Trends has shown Bengaluru to be…

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Air pollution has been a cause of worry globally. Economic growth of cities has influenced the spatial patterns of emission sources, directly impacting public health. Bengaluru’s rapid development and changing landscape followed by lack of planning has led to several urban concerns, with air pollution being a crucial one. Contributors to air pollution are unique to each city. Vehicular pollution is among those concerns that contributes maximum to air pollution in Bengaluru. Data indicates that 60-70% of the emissions is said to originate from vehicles. This makes the city the only one in India to be most impacted by vehicular…

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Bengaluru left shivering after cold wave According to Indian Meteorological Department (IMD), the city observatory at Sheshadri road recorded a minimum temperature of 13.1°C during the 24-hour period that ended at 8.30 am on Thursday. HAL Airport and KIA recorded 11.6°C and 11.2°C, respectively, Hesarghatta had recorded a minimum temperature of 9°C — the lowest temperature recorded in the city in a decade. This is attributed to the cold wave sweeping across north and south interior Karnataka, and the conditions are expected to remain for the next couple of days. City doctors say the number of patients with upper respiratory problems…

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