India Needs a Billion Trees.
The more the environment balance tips, the more it is becoming clear that tree-planting is the only way to address climate change and the ills of greenhouse gases (GHGs). Statistics reveal that it is only tree planting on a large scale that will make any dent in the mounting GHG numbers. Afforestation is emerging as the best “technology” to battle climate change.
A recent report by Oxford University says that between now and 2050, planting trees and improving soil quality are two “most promising” technologies to address climate change.
We at Sustainable Green Initiative are committed to increasing the green cover and become one of the active partners in fighting climate change. Since our inception in 2012we have planted over 25,000 trees in 23 locations across India. Most of them have been in extremely polluted regions of metros such as Kolkata, Delhi, Bengaluru and Gurgaon.
After all, we can’t stop taking those flights, can we? Neither will the manufacturing units simply stop growing, owing to the growth commitment they have made to their respective economies. There is no question of stopping the use of fossil fuels either, is there? Making renewable energy consumption a priority is a far cry still.
Be it compensatory forestation by engineering, cement, pharma and other sectors with a large carbon footprint, or Central and state governments’ commitment to increase the green cover, tree planting is here to stay. Creating, recreating or protecting forest lands where new trees are constantly growing in place of old ones, creates a “sink” of carbon, thus sequestering the carbon footprint to a large extent. Consider this, for instance; the mangrove forests of Sundarbans, West Bengal, store around 4.15 crore tones of carbon dioxide in an area of about 2,118 sq km. Research also shows that with the mangroves under threat, this carbon sequestering is fast decreasing. 1000 coconut saplings to tiger widows in May this year and is planting 3000 trees in homesteads of marginal farmers. Within three years, these trees will not only become carbon-positive but also provide a subsidiary income.
We continue to look for active support and partnership with government bodies and organizations to achieve the target of One Billion Trees.
At present, our afforestation initiatives include:
Shastri Park: 15 acres off Kashmere Gate, Delhi.
Auxilium, Najafgarh, Delhi.
Anandashram, Gurgaon, Haryana.
BC Farm, Badshapur, Haryana.
Pratt Memorial School, Kolkata
Rabindra Sarobar, Kolkata, W Bengal.
Sports Authority of India, Eastern Region Complex, Kolkata, W Bengal.
Auxilium, New Town, Kolkata, W Bengal.
Ashabari, South 24 Paraganas, W Bengal.