Want to save the city’s green cover? Here’s a novel way to approach the issue — organise a green race. Come Sunday, and Mumbaikars can be a part of what is called the Dombivli Green Race, to help conservation efforts in the area.
And the best part is that everyone’s a winner. While there are prizes up for grabs for the participants who can identify and log the several species of trees in the area, the result logs will ultimately be documented and offered to the Kalyan-Dombivli Municipal Corporation (KDMC), to aid the green cause and help save more trees in the area. The race is organised in the memory of renowned botanist the late Dr Shraddha Shimpi.
“This race is essentially about counting the local trees and documenting the various species that are in the area,” says Sonal Naik, co-ordintor of the event that has been organised by the NYASS Trust and KDMC. She adds that a 2007 survey conducted by botanist Shreya Bhanap in the area had revealed that there were as many as 143 species in Dombivli.
“This event lets us log the number of trees still standing, thereby aiding conservation.” Incidentally, Dombivli is endowed with different types of habitats like the hills of Bhopar, mangroves at the creek as well as lakes. These varied habitats have a variety of plants, birds, insects and reptiles.
The race will commence at 6 am on February 12. Initially, amateurs will be taken around the area by experts to teach them how to recognise and identify the trees in the locality. Then the actual race begins. The race has two categories — one for amateurs and the other for experts. At the end of the day, they will gather at the start-off point. Here, botanists will check the logbooks and tally results. They will then declare winners in both categories and also announce the ‘Tree of the day’.
How and when?
Ten to 15 groups will participate in the Green Race. Each group is made up of five members.
They will roam around Dombivli identifying the various species of trees in the area. nThe results, after being tallied by botanists, will be handed over to the KDMC. This will help the body identify rare trees that should be saved in the event of projects like road widening or construction.