On the 5th of June, as countries across the globe celebrated World Environment Day, Meenangadi, a panchayat in Wayanad district, took concrete steps towards a greener tomorrow by announcing the launch of the state’s first carbon neutrality project.
The project was unveiled by T M Thomas Isaac, the State Finance Minister. It is one of the many steps the government will be undertaking in its bid to develop Wayanad as the first carbon neutral district in the country.
Image for representation only. Source: Wikimedia Commons
Greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) are responsible for the greenhouse effect which in turn lead to global warming and climate change. The project aims to achieve carbon neutrality by offsetting and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
A carbon audit in the panchayat is the first phase of the project. The audit will be conducted with the help of school and college students as well as volunteers. It will include all 9000 households in the panchayat as well as the few small factories of the area.
Beena Vijayan, President of Meenangadi Panchayat, told The Times of India, “The survey will cover the domestic consumption of energy including electricity and fuels in all the households, and emissions from transportation. It would also assess emission from the limited number of small factories in the panchayat.”
With the help of the results from the audit, experts will calculate emission levels in the district. Targeted interventions will then be launched to supplement and curb the emissions being released. These will include the distribution and use of smoke-less ovens and low-energy LED lights. The government will also implement solid waste composting in all households, promote the use of renewable energy and push for a change in current agricultural practices.
This will be in addition to the massive afforestation drive that will be undertaken by the National Rural Employment Guarantee Programme (MNREGA). The government is expected to plant enough trees to offset release of emissions in the district.
With these measures, Wayanad is well on its way to becoming India’s first carbon neutral district.