KSPCB, Eco-warriors celebrate Parisara Habba

World over, June 5th is celebrated as World Environment Day. It’s that time of the year when people across the world come together to talk about the environment and how we need to make a change today, so we can help nurture the planet for tomorrow. In Bangalore, nothing could have said it better than the Parisara Habba.

Organised by the Karnataka State Pollution Control Board (KSPCB), the Parisara Habba, or the Festival of the Environment, is a two-day event held on June 5th and 6th at Kanteerava Indoor Stadium. While KSPCB does organise the event almost every year on the occasion of World Environment Day, this year’s edition was quite special.

NS Ramakanth (or Anna Hasiru, as he is fondly referred to) of Solid Waste Management Round Table who was a coordinator for the event says, “The format has been changed this year. It used to only be an award ceremony where people spoke. This year, in addition to the award ceremony, we have gathered eco-warriors across the city to showcase what they are doing. People can come, interact with them and draw inspiration from them.” Regarding the name of the event – Parisara Habba, he says, “It’s not merely a day; it is a festival, a celebration! Therefore, it has aptly been named Parisara Habba.”

Parisara Habba has a lot in store for everyone. With eco-friendly stalls, talks by experts, film screenings and more, you can be sure to get a fair perspective on the problems that the city is facing. What makes it all the more worthwhile is that you will find solutions to these problems. Waste management issues in your apartment? Head to the SWMRT stall. Want to clean up your neighbourhood lake? Make your way to the stall that is manned by One Bengaluru for Lakes. Want to start growing your own vegetables? Talk to the Garden City Farmers. Looking to shift to eco-friendly sanitary products? You can even buy a menstrual cup!

The people you meet at the stalls will certainly help you to start making small changes in your life that will go a long way in protecting the environment. And with Bangalore’s garbage woes ever the bane of our lives, it came as no surprise that 12 of the 35 stalls at the venue were related to waste management.

In addition to the stalls, on June 6th, the Habba will play host to a variety of presentations and panel discussions with some of the city’s foremost subject matter experts. Some of the topics that will be covered are:

  • Lake restoration through community action

  • Menstrual Hygiene: Management and environmental considerations

  • From Garbage City to Garden City

  • Organic Urban Terrace Farming

The schedule for June 6th can be found here.

Bangalore’s own wins state-level environment award

Solid Waste Management Round Table (SWMRT) was one among the three winners of the state-level environment award. The group received a cash award of Rs 1 lakh from the Chief Minister, Siddaramaiah.

The SWMRT team receiving the award from Chief Minister, Siddaramaiah. Pic: Ganga Madappa

To most Citizen Matters’ readers, the SWMRT team certainly needs no introduction. The group is one of the foremost authorities in Bengaluru on sustainable waste management. With experts and committed volunteers like NS Ramakanth, Sandya Narayan, Malini Parmar, Lalitha Mondreti, Vani Murthy, Savitha Hiremath, and many others on board, SWMRT is pretty much the go-to group for any questions one might have related to waste management.

SWMRT has put up five stalls to address the issues of waste disposal, segregation at source, organic waste processing, recycling and reducing landfill waste.

Bangalore’s eco-warriors

Here are some snapshots from Parisara Habba, featuring some of the inspiring people and organisations that Citizen Matters bumped into.

Two bins and one bag – all that it takes to segregate garbage. Pic: Ganga Madappa

Dr Shanti explains the 2Bin1Bag philosophy to the Chief Minister. The Chief Minister in turn directed Bangalore In-charge Minister, Ramalinga Reddy to get in touch with the team. Pic: Ganga Madappa

Want to try your hand at composting? Choose from one of three methods. Pic: Ganga Madappa

Resources 

An interactive game to show people how long it takes for waste to compost. If you’re drinking from plastic bottles and discarding them irresponsibly, you should know that it does not decompose. Ever! Pic: Ganga Madappa

Power bins vs. Garbster. A comic strip that talks about the ill-effects of landfilling our waste. Pic: Ganga Madappa

Red, blue and green, here’s what they mean. This should be your mantra for waste segregation. Pic: Ganga Madappa

School children at the Garden City Farmers’ stall. The post on Facebook says many of the students were keen on growing dill! Pic: Organic Terrace Farming

DIY eco-friendly alternatives for home use. Pic: Ganga Madappa

Byrasandra lake – A fine example of how illegally sold lake land can be retrieved as public commons and rejuvenated. Pic: Ganga Madappa

Question the authorities when money has been spent for naught. Pic: Ganga Madappa

Did you know that sanitary napkins, which most often make their way to landfills, take anywhere between 500 to 800 years to compost? Here’s a stall that promotes an environment-friendly, safe alternative – Shecup. Pic: Ganga Madappa

In line with the theme for the day, food was being served in recyclable plates. The only downside was that buttermilk packets were being handed out, some of which were strewn about carelessly by irresponsible citizens. Pic: Ganga Madappa

Waste segregation in progress at the lunch counter. Pic: Ganga Madappa

If you are looking to start making a difference in your lives, and to the people around you, there’s no better time than now. Make your way to Kanteerava Stadium for the Parisara Habba. While the event is scheduled for only two days, the lessons you pick up from there, will certainly prove useful for the rest of your lives, and for the lives of the generations to come.

To close, here’s some food for thought from NS Ramakanth:

  • Save resources, save the earth.

  • Our waste is our own responsibility.

  • Think before you throw.

From all of us at Citizen Matters, here’s hoping that we celebrate every day as World Environment Day.

Related Articles

Here’s how you can celebrate World Environment Day
Celebrate every day as Earth Day
Parisara Habba 2015

About Ganga Madappa 77 Articles
Ganga Madappa is a Staff Reporter and the Community Manager at Citizen Matters. She loves cats and books and travel. She tweets at @pulicatmonster and blogs at Random Rambling.

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