We are dirtying our environment and making our children clean it: Aditya Thackeray

Pune, January 29, 2020: “By making our children clean beaches and streets in the name of cleanliness campaign we are imposing penalty on them. We litter and dirty the environment and punish our children by cleaning it. We have to take the responsibility and have to act and stop being selfish as we have been ignoring our environment policies for too long,” said Aditya Thackeray, Cabinet Minister of Tourism and Environment Government of Maharashtra.

He was speaking at the release of the policy roadmap ‘Making Pune Metropolitan Region Carbon Neutral by 2030 listed by Dr. Amitav Malik, Trustee and Program Committee Head, PIC and organized by the Pune International Centre (PIC) at Finolex Board Room, MCCIA, Senapati Bapat Road, Pune today.

Dignitaries including Dr. Raghunath Mashelkar, President, PIC, Dr. Vijay Kelkar, Vice President, PIC and Prashant Girbane, Hon. Director, PIC, Dr. Amitav Malik , Vikram Kumar, Commissioner, PMRDA, Dr. Nitant Mate, Director SeeGreen Solutions LLP, Dr. Priyadarshini Karve, CEO, Samuchit Enviro Tech, Dr. Gurudas Nulkar, Professor, Symbiosis Center for Management and members from Climate Collective Pune (CCP)- Sarang Yadwadkar, Anita Gokhale Benninger and Anupam Saraph.

The policy roadmap is the mission of PIC initiative for making Pune Metropolitan Region ‘Net Carbon Neutral by 2030’. The roadmap is a strategic plan, research and suggestion developed in collaboration with experts in Pune as the Climate Collective Pune (CCP) group under the umbrella of PIC.

“We can’t extend our plans till 2030 but rather set a date for future discussion and have reviews and meetings every month to achieve our ecological goals. At present we have been promising to set up wifi-hotspots in the city but in the future, we’ll have to promise setting up oxygen hotspots. We need to develop better education, health and waste management systems and make use of renewable energy rather than concretizing the city,” Thackeray said.

According to him, the cities in Maharashtra need to set up mechanisms and technology to fight pollution and garbage efficiently. “Solid waste management is very important. Mumbai in 2017 produced 10,000 metric tonnes of unsegregated waste everyday but we went and told all ‘bulk generators of waste’ like hotels and other establishments that they would have to dispose their own trash if it is not segregated. That worked and the number came down to 6,500 metric tonnes in just a year. Pune has the potential to do that and it can achieve its aims of becoming carbon neutral by 2025,” he said.

Thackeray stated that the state government is keen on working on five major schemes in the next five years which will include urban town-planning, disbursal of traffic management, Solid waste management, urban forest-planning and electric transport. “We have to adapt to Climate Change and built systems to counter it,” said Thackeray.

Dr Raghunath Mashelkar said, “Our aim to become carbon neutral by 2030 is not difficult. Pune has the capability to achieve it and convert ideas into action. The role of the government and today’s youth is crucial as it their future we are talking about.”