Hyderabad: On the eve of World Environment Day, non-profit Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) released its annual compendium of data in which Telangana was ranked in the top in terms of overall environmental performance. Delhi-based CSE, a prominent public interest research and advocacy organisation, released its annual compendium of data ‘State of India’s Environment 2023: In Figures’ on Sunday (June 4).
The report offers a wealth of statistics on the state of climate and extreme weather, health, food and nutrition, migration and displacement, agriculture, energy, waste, water and biodiversity.
A press release from Telangana Minister K T Rama Rao said the progress achieved in increasing forest cover and in municipal waste treatment were considered for the ranking. Besides, Chief Minister K Chandrasekar Rao’s brainchild ‘Haritha Haaram’ afforestation scheme and other environmental-friendly programmes secured this rare honour, the minister added.
On the occasion, Minister Rama Rao recalled the state government’s pioneering initiatives which led to remarkable increase in the green cover in both rural and urban areas, the social benefits and national, international recognitions achieved because of them.
He said about 273 crore saplings were planted in the last nine years across Telangana leading to an increase in the forest cover in the state from 19,854 square kilometres in 2015-16 to 26,969 square kilometres in 2023. A remarkable 24.06 per cent of geographical area in the state is covered with forests.
The minister said while only 74 megawatt (MW) was produced through solar energy when the state was formed in 2014, it surged to 5,865 MW now.
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NDTV – Dettol have been working towards a clean and healthy India since 2014 via 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 – the LGBTQ 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 current COVID-19 pandemic, the need for WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) 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, fight malnutrition, 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, that 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 like air pollution, waste management, plastic ban, manual scavenging and sanitation workers and menstrual hygiene. Banega Swasth India will also be taking forward the dream of Swasth Bharat, the campaign feels that only a Swachh or clean India where toilets are used and open defecation free (ODF) status achieved as part of the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2014, can eradicate diseases like diahorrea and the country can become a Swasth or healthy India.