India is the global host of UN-led ‘World Environment Day’ celebrations 2018. The theme of this year is “Beat Plastic Pollution”.
The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, has come up with several programmes and activities scheduled this May-June. The Ministry has formed 19 teams to take up cleaning of beaches, riverfronts and lakes in the country.
They are going to undertake the cleaning of around 24 beaches in nine coastal states, and riverfronts in 24 identified polluted stretches in 19 states. The clean-up activities have started from May 15 and will conclude on June 5. There are going to be various other cultural programmes, quiz competitions, debates and rallies. Besides the listed rivers, there will be a special cleanliness drive carried out at Yamuna riverfront in Delhi as well. A few other lakes and water bodies along with cleaning of the archaeological sites are being taken up too.
An amount of Rs 10 lakh is sanctioned for the cleanliness of each stretch of beach, riverfront and lake.
The 19 teams will include senior officers of Environment ministry, State nodal agencies in-charge of Eco-clubs of schools, State Pollution Control Boards, District Administration, College of fisheries located along the coastal stretches, and other educational/research institutions. It will involve school and college students and local communities in cleaning. The Ministry will be engaging Eco-club schools, assisted by MoEF&CC under National Green Corps programme.
Equipments like brooms, baskets, gloves and dustbins are going to be provided along with the transportation facility.
Dr Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister for Environment, Forest and Climate change has written and requested principals of the schools to make their institution free from plastic. At the end of the programme, the Ministry is also going to certify the schools that become plastic free.
Apart from the cleanliness drives, mini-marathons are also being organised at Vinay Marg on June 3. Around 10-15,000 people from Delhi-NCR are expected to attend the mini-marathon. On the same day, the marathons are also being organised in five other cities – Bengaluru, Ahmedabad, Gangtok, Bhopal and Bhubaneshwar.