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Act now and save the hills or Pune might become as polluted as Delhi, say experts

This has raised the necessity of conserving available open spaces and hills in the city. Understanding this need, in 2005, the open land spaces in 23 merged villages were proposed to be reserved under the Bio-Diversity Park (BDP).

pune Updated: Nov 29, 2017 15:20 IST
Jui Dharwadkar
Jui Dharwadkar
Hindustan Times, Pune
Pune,delhi,pollution
Many experts have also cautioned about the need for protecting open lands including hills in the city to prevent Pune from facing problems similar to Delhi in the future.(Rahul Raut/ HT PHOTO)

With Pune expanding rapidly and the population growing exponentially, most of the open spaces in the city, which once defined the quality of life here, are depleting very fast.

This has raised the necessity of conserving available open spaces and hills in the city. Understanding this need, in 2005, the open land spaces in 23 merged villages were proposed to be reserved under the Bio-Diversity Park (BDP).

Environmentalist Vishwambhar Choudhari said, “There are already very few open spaces left in the city. Those under the BDP should at least be conserved to prevent further environmental degradation in the city.”

Many experts have also cautioned about the need for protecting open lands including hills in the city to prevent Pune from facing problems similar to Delhi in the future.

According to urban planner Anita Benninger, the city needs 15 square metres of open land per person to mitigate pollution. This includes 3 square metres of open spaces and 12 square metres of forest land per person.

Speaking on the depleting open spaces, founder of NGO Parisar, Sujit Patwardhan, said, “Hundreds of Puneites are seen going to Khadakwasla and Sinhagad fort as they feel suffocated in the city. Considering this, we need to protect the open spaces that we have including the area under the BDP zone. Also the rivers must be protected which would enhance the quality of life in the city. If we keep encouraging environmental degradation then, it will soon to backfire with rising number of disease and Pune might start facing problems similar to Delhi and Bengaluru.”

Experts believe that BDP is seen as a carbon sink for the city as the emphasis presently is on reducing the carbon emissions.

First Published: Nov 29, 2017 15:19 IST