Green Citizens Initiative is a networking platform involving citizens in neighbourhood environmental initiatives, identifying and promoting green innovations by individuals and institutions, and partnering with organisations on environmental and civic issues. The activities involved with GCI include:
a. Conducting neighbourhood appreciation walks: In today’s fast-paced world, we have lost our ability to pause and observe our surroundings- that tiny butterfly flitting by or that sparrow chirping around, or that spider, making a web or that snail, crawling on the wall or that magnificent banyan tree or those beautiful blooms on the hedges. The advent of satellite television, people today are more familiar with the biodiversity in Europe, Australia, Africa or America. Sadly, they are quite unaware about the ones in their own backyard. The neighbourhood appreciation walks are our effort to help people be aware of their “other neighbours”.
b. Neighbourhood tree mapping and biodiversity monitoring programme: Theses are GreenLine’s Citizen Science programme. These programme help citizens take a step further than just being aware about their neighbourhood. The citizens can take the onus of documenting the biodiversity in neighbourhood on to themselves. These observations can be uploaded on our two websites viz. www.treewatchers.org.in (for mapping trees) and www.ecolog.org.in (for documenting fauna). The data shared on the website is under the Creative Commons licenses.
c. E-waste awareness and collection drives: Mumbai produces a stunning 22,000 tonnes of e-waste,or electronic waste, annually! Although there is a law in place since May 2011, which requires disposal of e-waste only through licensed e-waste handlers, most e-waste in India is disposed through the unregulated sector and involves crude processes like burning or acid extraction. These processes have a negative impact on both, the environment as well as the health of the workers involved. In order to address this concern, as well as create awareness about the hazards of improper e-waste disposal, GreenLine has launched a year-long campaign- e4E Campaign (E-waste for Environmental Conservation) campaign since 1st March 2014.
The housing societies, ALMs, institutes, organisations or corporates can collect their e-waste for the campaign. GreenLine staff and members would be happy to come to your place to sensitise the people about e-waste. On a pre-designated day our partner RecycleKaro.com would come and collect the same. People can also drop in their e-waste at the GreenLine office on prior intimation. The proceeds from this campaign will be donated to Sahyadri Nisarg Mitra for their Vulture Conservation Project. We have been able to dispose of 2600 kg of e-waste to the date and raise about Rs. 42,500/-
Vulture Conservation is of critical importance since there has been a drastic decline in vulture populations over the past two decades. In fact, certain vulture species have seen a 99% drop in their population during the past few years. Today, vultures have almost totally vanished from the face of Mumbai. As scavengers, vultures play a very important role in the ecosystem. They clean up the carcasses and thereby keep diseases away. In a way the GreenLine through this campaign looks to play a similar role for the health of Mumbai by targeting e-waste. The current project being promoted by Sahyadri Nisarg Mitra involves several practical conservation steps, such as mapping vulture nesting locations and protecting vulture colonies along the Konkan coastline.
We appeal to all the citizens to contribute their e-waste and help in the cause of vulture conservation. Please remember your support will go a long way in ensuring that our city is safe from the harmful impacts of careless e-waste disposal and at the same time it will enable the vultures have a happier future!