1. India’s first carbon neutral farm inaugurated by Kerala Chief Minister Pinnari Vijayan at Aluva, Kerala
Kerala Chief Minister Pinnari Vijayan on 10 December 2022 inaugurated Kerala's State Seed Farm located in Aluva, Ernakulam district. It is the first farm in India which is carbon neutral.
The farm practices carbon-neutral farming which involves absorption of all the carbon that gets released during various agriculture practices in the soil itself.
The farm avoids using fossil fuels, energy-consuming equipment, and chemicals during cultivation by practicing mixed farming, keeping native breeds of goat, chicken, ducks and cows and producing vermicompost.
Mixed farming involves the cultivation of crops and raising of livestocks.
How the farm is made carbon neutral
- The main crop in the farm is high-yielding paddy and a variety of this crop is grown including njavara, rakthashali, Japanese violet, chottadi, and pokkali. By mixing five different varieties there is reduction in attacks by pests and diseases thereby avoiding the use of pesticides completely?
- Farming of goats, cows, chicken, ducks, bees, fish, vermicompost and azolla has also helped in cutting down waste generation. Converting agriculture waste into compost provides fertiliser for the fields as doe’s cow dung. The ducks and hens in the farm help in controlling pests.
- The animals on the farm are fed fodder, grass, hay and barn, all of which are produced at the farm. To become completely carbon-neutral, the farm has solar panels on the roof which helps in meeting the need for power.
2. UP government to build Ramayana, Mahabharata, Buddhist circuits under the New Tourism Policy
The Uttar Pradesh cabinet in a meeting held on 16 November 2022 and chaired by the Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath approved the New Tourism policy for the state on 16 November 2022. The government will focus on developing the Ramayana ,Krishna, Buddhist and Mahabharata circuit to promote religious tourism in the state .
Under the Ramayana circuit the places associated with Lord Rama will be developed . It will include Ayodhya, Chitrakoot, Bithoor and other places of significance during the Ramayana period.
Under the Krishna Circuit the places associated with Lord Krishna will be developed. Mathura, Vrindavan, Gokul, Govardhan, Barsana, Nandgaon, and Baldev will be included in the Krishna circuit.
Under the Buddhist circuit Kapilvastu, Sarnath, Kushinagar, Kaushambi, Shravasti, Ramgram and other places associated with lord Buddha will be developed .
The Mahabharata circuit will include Hastinapur, Kampilya, Echhatra, Barnawa, Mathura, Kaushambi, Gonda, Lakshagriha.
Under the Shaktipeeth circuit Vindhyavasini Devi, Ashtabhuja to Devipatan, Naimisharanya, Maa Lalita Devi, Maa Jwala Devi, Shakumbhari Devi from Saharanpur to Shivani Devi, Chitrakoot and Sheetla Mata, Mau will be developed.
To boost spiritual tourism in the state, Gorakhpur, Balrampur, Mathura, Sant Ravidas Sthal, Maa Parameshwari Devi, Azamgarh, Bighu Ashram of Ballia, Bateshwar of Agra, Hanuman Dham Shahjahanpur have been included.
To boost wildlife and ecotourism,the government will focus on developing sanctuary and forest reserves.
Under the new tourism policy the government will develop places associated with the freedom struggle like Meerut, Shahjahanpur, Kakori and Chaurichaura will be developed as a tourist place .
To boost tourism in the Bundelkhand area the government will focus on districts like Charkhari, Chitrakoot, Kalinjar, Jhansi, Deogarh, Lalitpur, Banda, Mahoba, Hamirpur, and Jalaun.
Jaiveer Singh is the Minister of Tourism & Culture in the Government of Uttar Pradesh.
3. Uttar Pradesh government to make Vrindavan -Mathura pilgrimage center carbon neutral by 2041
The Uttar Pradesh government has made an ambitious plan to make the Vrindavan -Mathura tourist pilgrimage center carbon neutral by 2041. This will be the first tourist center in India to plan for a carbon neutral status.
The government expects the tourist arrival in the Mathura Vrindavan region to increase from the present 2.3 crore per year to around 6 crore in 2041. To deal with the expected increase in footfall and increase in carbon footprint, the government has made a plan to make the region carbon neutral by 2041,
Plan of the government
- The entire pilgrimage region will be divided into four clusters each containing two of the eight key cites.
- The plan proposes to form small circuits called ‘Parikrama Paths’ which the pilgrim can undertake either on foot or using electric vehicles.
- To reduce the carbon emission the government intends to ban the use of private tourist vehicles in the entire Braj region
- Only electric public transport will run in the identified region
- All the 252 water bodies and 24 forests in the area will be revived so that they can act as a carbon sink.
Mathura -Vrindavan region and its significance
- The city of Mathura and Vrindavan is associated with Lord Krishna’s birth and childhood.
- Both the cities are situated along the river Yamuna.
- Mathura is mentioned in Ramayana and was one of the capitals of the Kushan King Kanishka (130AD).
- Some of the famous temples of the region are: Govind Dev Temple, Rangaji Temple, Dwarikadhish Temple, Bankey Bihari Temple and the ISKCON Temple.
- Gokul, Barsana and Govardhan are the other townships associated with the legend of Lord Krishna.
What is Carbon Neutral and Net Zero?
Carbon neutral refers to the removal of the same amount of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere by various means as the amount of carbon dioxide which is released in the atmosphere leaving a Zero balance or zero carbon.
Net Zero means the removal of the same amount of Greenhouse gasses (eg CO2, methane, CFC etc. ) from the atmosphere by various means as the amount of Greenhouse gasses which is released in the atmosphere leaving a Zero balance or net Zero.
Important to Know
India has set a target to become zero net emission country by 2070.
Palli panchayat in Samba district of Jammu is the first carbon neutral panchayat in India.