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Redefining gender issues and conservation

It is time we redefined what we mean by conservation and what constitutes gender issues. I am in Almora, where a group of anguished women are telling me how their already hard life has become harsher because of marauding monkeys and wild boar. Their stories are heart-rending. One woman tells me how her young daughter was attacked. Another one talks of how she was mauled. She shows me her scars. All talk about how their crops are being devastated. “We get one-third (yield) or even less now.” Nothing is left, another says.

Garbage is about recycling

It is time we accepted that each household and commercial establishment is a waste generator and so a potential polluter

Last fortnight, I discussed the need to reinvent garbage management in our cities so that we can process waste and not “landfill” it. This, as I wrote, required households and institutions to segregate their waste at source so that it could be managed as a resource. It also means that we need to limit how much is dumped by imposing a tax on landfill. I want to follow up on this idea this fortnight.

Solving India’s garbage problem

Segregation at source should be at the heart of municipalities’ solid waste management system

We know that we have a serious garbage problem. But the problem is not about finding the right technology for waste disposal. The problem is how to integrate the technology with a system of household-level segregation so that waste does not end up in landfills, but is processed and reused. It is clear that there will be no value from waste, as energy or material, if it is not segregated. But this is where our waste management system stops short.

Drought but why

It is time we understood that since drought is human-made it can be reversed

 

How to reinvent the sanitation wheel

The city “shit-flow” diagram shows that the situation is grim as all cities either do not treat or safely dispose the bulk of the human excreta

Why we cannot ignore the poor

 One thing is clear—the solutions must work for the poor, for them to work for the rich

Some fortnights ago, I had discussed the issue of poverty and environment. I had then said that the question today is not whether the poor are responsible for environmental degradation but whether environmental management works if it does not address inequality and poverty. Why?

Art of gobbling up Yamuna floodplain

Without proper mapping and a plan for its acceptable use, no one can prevent the Yamuna floodplain from being gobbled up

Unreal in pampered India

With NDMC winning the smart city challenge, the contrast between where the government lives and where the rest of the citizens live could not have been more evident and striking

Insure farmers to ensure future

Let’s leave for the moment the questions why these extreme weather events are happening in our world with greater frequency and intensity. Let’s discuss what we need to do

Wheels are turning

Let’s share cars; take a bus or metro; cycle or walk

Early this month, I was in the Delhi High Court, where a battery of lawyers had filed separate petitions against the odd-even scheme of the Delhi government. This is a scheme to ration car usage so that in the critically polluted winter months only half the vehicles are on the road. Their arguments were that the scheme had led to enormous inconvenience and worse, daily pollution data showed no impact on air quality. Cars, they said, were not responsible for pollution. 

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