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Delhi Joins UN’s Race To Resilience Campaign, Commits To 25 Percent Green Cover

As part of the Race to Resilience campaign, the government has also committed to increasing the green space and tree planting, aiming to achieve a 25 per cent green cover in the next five years

Delhi Joins UN-Backed Campaign To Build Climate Resilience, Commits To 25 Percent Green Cover
The government said initiatives, such as the Delhi City of Lakes project, will rejuvenate water bodies, improve water quality and reduce flooding

New Delhi: Delhi has joined the “Race to Resilience”, a UN-backed campaign to catalyse a step-change in the global ambition for climate resilience, with pledges including achieving a 25 per cent green cover within the next five years. Delhi’s participation in the “Race to Resilience”, announced during an event at the Climate Week NYC on Wednesday (September 20), comes with a set of commitments aimed at enhancing climate resilience while fostering sustainable development.

These include investments in circular economy to re-purpose and reduce waste and in decentralised renewable energy sources to enhance access to clean and sustainable energy.

As part of the campaign, the Delhi government has also committed to increasing the green space and tree planting, aiming to achieve a 25 per cent green cover in the next five years.

According to the India State of Forest Report, Delhi’s green cover currently stands at 23.06 per cent.

The government said initiatives, such as the Delhi City of Lakes project, will rejuvenate water bodies, improve water quality and reduce flooding.

Also Read: Climate Change May Permanently Alter Mountain Forests: Study 

Delhi is one of the hottest cities in India and ranks among the most susceptible to heat waves due to its large population and a significant concentration of lower-income groups. Extreme heat is hurting local productivity, putting vulnerable populations at risk and contributing to the rapidly rising energy demand.

Heat waves are becoming more intense and frequent due to climate change.

Delhi’s draft action plan on climate change says the city is projected to suffer losses of Rs 2.75 lakh crore by 2050 due to the impacts of climate change, with changes in precipitation and temperature patterns posing significant threats to the most vulnerable populations. A UN statement quoted Reena Gupta, advisor to the city government, as saying,

Our government is committed to implementing sustainable cooling and heat resilience strategies. I firmly believe that the Delhi Heat Action Plan (HAP) will prioritise the marginalised communities, particularly those living in substandard homes that serve as heat traps.

Delhi has also set its eyes on becoming a national and global leader in rooftop solar generation through the new Delhi Solar Policy. The overarching objective is to increase the installed capacity of rooftop solar plants to meet 10 per cent of Delhi’s annual energy demand, a transformation that is anticipated to create 40,000 new green jobs in this sector.

Also Read: “Climate Crisis Is Spiralling Out Of Control,” Says UN Chief, Urges G20 Nations To Keep “1.5 Degree Goal Alive”

Delhi had also launched an electric vehicle (EV) policy in August 2020 to improve the air quality by rapidly increasing EV adoption, targeting a 25 per cent share of EVs in new vehicle registrations by 2024. Ms. Gupta said,

The government’s existing policies and programmes demonstrate a commitment to improving the resilience of urban infrastructure, environment, energy, water supply and transportation systems. The government is dedicated to building climate resilience at the local level, enhancing environmental sustainability, and preparing the city to face the challenges posed by climate change.

Razan Al Mubarak, UN Climate Change High-Level Champion for COP28, said,

Communities must build resilience to climate change and Delhi’s ambitions are exemplary. We can learn from the pragmatic, realistic and just solutions-oriented approach that the city of Delhi is providing. For example, boosting clean energy using rooftop solar plants in residential areas or advancing the technology used for monitoring local air pollution.

Mahmoud Mohieldin, UN Climate Change High-Level Champion for COP27, congratulated Delhi for joining the campaign and aligning to the Sharm El-Sheikh Adaptation Agenda launched at the UN climate conference in Egypt’s Sharm El Sheikh last year. He said,

Delhi is showing that climate action can be approached holistically, offering solutions that are inclusive and affordable for both investors and the community.

Also Read: Climate Change And Air Pollution Must Be Tackled Together: World Meteorological Organization

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

NDTV – Dettol have been working towards a clean and healthy India since 2014 via the Banega Swachh India initiative, which is helmed by Campaign Ambassador Amitabh Bachchan. The campaign aims to highlight the inter-dependency of humans and the environment, and of humans on one another with the focus on One Health, One Planet, One Future – Leaving No One Behind. It stresses on the need to take care of, and consider, everyone’s health in India – especially vulnerable communities – theLGBTQ population,indigenous people, India’s different tribes, ethnic and linguistic minorities, people with disabilities, migrants, geographically remote populations, gender and sexual minorities. In wake of the currentCOVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (Water,SanitationandHygiene) is reaffirmed as handwashing is one of the ways to prevent Coronavirus infection and other diseases. The campaign will continue to raise awareness on the same along with focussing on the importance of nutrition and healthcare for women and children, fightmalnutrition, mental wellbeing, self care, science and health,adolescent health & gender awareness. Along with the health of people, the campaign has realised the need to also take care of the health of the eco-system. Our environment is fragile due to human activity, which is not only over-exploiting available resources, but also generating immense pollution as a result of using and extracting those resources. The imbalance has also led to immense biodiversity loss that has caused one of the biggest threats to human survival – climate change. It has now been described as a “code red for humanity.” The campaign will continue to cover issues likeair pollution,waste management,plastic ban,manual scavengingand sanitation workers andmenstrual hygiene. Banega Swasth India will also be taking forward the dream of Swasth Bharat, the campaign feels that only a Swachh or clean India wheretoiletsare used andopen defecation free (ODF)status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched byPrime Minister Narendra Modiin 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and the country can become a Swasth or healthy India.

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