Green thumbs get to work | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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Green thumbs get to work

Want to buy organic food but don’t know where to shop for it? Soon, all the information you need about green service providers will be available at the click of the mouse.

mumbai Updated: Jun 05, 2011 01:26 IST
Snehal Rebello

Want to buy organic food but don’t know where to shop for it? Soon, all the information you need about green service providers will be available at the click of the mouse.

Taking note of the lack of first-hand information about green services and environment management in Mumbai, the Wadala-based Environmental Management Centre (EMC) has developed a ‘green map’ of the city, plotting for eco-conscious Mumbaiites every listed agency providing organic food, sustainable transport options, green courses, expertise or research services.

“There is no tool available in the city for those who are truly interested in environment and want to connect thematically,” said Prasad Modak, executive president of the EMC, adding that the map will go online in a month. “Internationally, green maps focus only on green zones, but the Mumbai map will capture leading agencies dealing with the environment and environment management.”

Meanwhile, for citizens who cannot wait to get started, the EMC has developed a city-specific web-based carbon footprint calculator where you can measure your impact on the environment and work on shifting towards a more low-carbon lifestyle. The site (www.emccentre.com/knowCO2now) will be launched next week.

Be it through a carbon footprint calculator, planting seeds at the Indian Institute of Technology-Powai campus or organising a workshop on how to handle a leopard that has strayed into a human settlement, the city seems to finally be reacting to green concerns.

“There is a big change in people’s mindsets in Mumbai; they have started holding themselves responsible for global warming,” said Avinash Kubal, director of the Mahim Nature Park. “Five years ago, anyone working on the environment was considered offbeat or different. Now, I see people using their balconies and terraces to create green spaces and becoming much more conscious about water and electricity use.”

The physical impact of climate change has brought about this awareness, said Katy Rustom of the Centre for Environmental Research and Education. “In the past, working on the environment was considered philanthropy. Now, as the effects of climate change become apparent, green initiatives are becoming good business opportunities too,” said Rustom. “Diseases like malaria, which are related to climate change and are seeing dramatic increases in terms of number of cases, are hitting home, making people sit up.”

On World Environment Day, Hindustan Times profiles individuals who are doing their bit for the environment and helping spread the green message through their initiatives.