Environmental sustainability topmost priority of the Himachal Government

By | March 30, 2020

The government of Himachal Pradesh is committed to ensuring the sustainability of environmental heritage and natural resources for the welfare of people of the state. The Government has implemented a climate change policy in the state, giving top priority to environmental conservation.

The conservation of the environment is among the top priority of the State Government. For creating awareness amongst the public to adopt pollution-free energy for environmental conservation, Roof Top Solar Power Plant has been installed on the roof of Paryavaran Bhawan Shimla. This plant generates 35 KV of energy per day, saving about Rs. 4 lakh per year.

In order to reduce pollution emission in industries, conservation of the environment and for use of green technology, the process of the environmental audit of functional projects and industrial units has been started for the first time in the state which will be done twice in a year.

On the basis of information collected by this audit and its recommendations, the strategy will be devised to make industries environment compatible. This year, an environmental audit of ten environmentally sensitive pharmaceutical industries, paper mills and cement plants has been started in the state.

To reduce the risk of non-biodegradable wastes, the government has adopted a proactive approach through ‘Polythene Hatao, Paryavaran Bachao’ campaign, a public participatory campaign of the government against plastic. The plastic waste collected during these campaigns is used for metalling of roads, as fuel for cement plants and for making refuse-derived fuel. This campaign has started showing the results as the seven-kilometer road has been metalled near Taradevi in Shimla by using plastic waste. The plastic and other waste collected by Panchayati Raj Institutions and Urban Local Bodies which cannot be used for metalling roads are provided to the cement plants to be used as fuel.

The government has gone a step ahead to make the state plastic-free with the launch of the Buy-Back policy of non-recyclable and single-use plastic waste including plastic bags in Himachal Pradesh from the rag pickers and households, providing minimum support price of Rs. 75 per kilogram, for its collection and deposit in collection centers for ULBs. So far, 1055 kilogram plastic has been collected under this scheme and this is improving the economy of rag pickers as well.

Besides this, a complete ban has been imposed on the use of plastic and thermocol cutlery in the state and the use of traditional plates and bowls of leaves is being promoted. A budgetary provision of Rs. 70 lakh has been made by the government to provide 100 machines to poor families for this purpose.

To make major tourist destinations of Shimla and Mandi free of noise pollution ‘Horn Not OK’ campaign has been started by the government. ‘Shor Nahi’ mobile app has also been launched to register online complaints against noise pollutants in the state.

Under the Eco Village Scheme, 10 villages have been selected which will be developed as Eco Villages. Rs. 50 lakh have been sanctioned to each village under this scheme to be implemented in the next five years.

Youth, and especially students, are the most important stakeholders of any activity of nation-building and social transformation. The government is making every effort to generate awareness amongst students about environment conservation. For this purpose, different types of competitions are organized on important occasions like World Environment Day, World Wetland Day and Earth Day, etc. in the State.

For motivating people of the state, the Himachal government has started ‘Himachal Pradesh Paryavaran Utkrishtata Puruskar’ which is given as recognition to progressive works done in the field of environment conservation.

The state government has given special importance to environmental conservation and mitigating serious impacts of climate change. The ‘Mukhya Mantri Green Technology Transfer Scheme’ has been launched with a view to provide livelihood and self employment to the rural people affected by climate change. The government has decided to provide a grant of 50 percent of the cost or a maximum amount of Rs. 5 lakh to farmer production organizations, self-help groups and young entrepreneurs to set up a green industry by transferring green technology. A budgetary provision of Rs. 50 lakh has been made for this purpose.

The steps taken by state government for environment conservation would help build a healthy society and protect our planet.

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