What would you describe as Dehradun’s main achievements in the field of sustainability?
Dehradun has been a distinguished centre of learning for long. After formation of Uttarakhand as a new state, the city gained further prominence as the capital. Evidently, the population pressure has increased and the responsibilities gotten bigger. Subsequently, the city has become more aware and further active on sustainability actions. It has partnered with large corporate houses for various actions on buildings and energy saving. Very recently, Dehradun Nagar Nigam (DNN) has initiated an online grievances redressal system for fast track removal of municipal waste.
What are your plans for the coming future to make Dehradun a more sustainable and resilient city?
The city has about 9 lakh people, if we include the floating population. Thus, it has become much pressing that more sustainability is built in for the city. DNN is trying to create newer institutional mechanisms, with participation from various organisations including line agencies. We plan to make our services better on waste management, roads and traffic and overall quality of life including public safety, to mention a few.
How do you think ICLEI South Asia will help you achieve these goals?
I think we can engage in several adaptation and mitigation actions together with ICLEI South Asia. It adds to our existing resources of several credible national institutes, like Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology, Forest Research Institute (FRI), Zoological Survey of India, to name a few that have long contributed to and guided development and growth of Dehradun. We are pleased to be ICLEI members and hope that this would benefit both parties in building sustainability and resilience in this capital city that is poised to grow even faster in the coming decade.