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Systematic disposal of waste key to nature conservation in cities: Expert

Comments Off on Systematic disposal of waste key to nature conservation in cities: Expert   |   February 8, 2014    07:24am   |Contributed by manoja

CHENNAI: One solution to the many problems of nature conservation in a city is the systematic disposal of solid and liquid wastes, says conservationist and ornithologist Tara Gandhi.

“It’s not the only solution, but it can reduce numerous problems. We have to ask questions like how much garbage are we generating and where they go,” said Gandhi on Wednesday. She was delivering the Dr Renuka Mukherjee Somasekhar Endowment Lecture on ‘Saving nature in a City’ at the Women’s Christian College in Chennai.

Addressing the faculty and students, Gandhi said being conscious of waste segregation and disposal would prevent filling up of wetlands, avoid pollution which causes biodiversity loss, prevent threats to terrestrial and marine wildlife and prevent the spread of diseases through pests.

She took the faculty and students of the college on a conducted tour of the wildlife in Chennai and spoke about the major challenges to conserving nature in the city. Development aspirations result in ecological and development changes in the city, which is destroying nature, according to her. The impact of human population and its demands and extensive construction also pose problems to conservation.

“It is unfortunate that scrub jungles in the city, which are dense and thorny but are sought out by special birds that only like thorny bushes, are being classified as waste land by some,” she said.

“India holds the most extraordinary variety of ecosystems. Our cities are carved out of these ecosystems but have now overtaken the natural environment. The ecosystems have now shrunk to five or six pockets in the cities. We need to save these natural habitats,” Gandhi said.

She said urban planning incorporating scientific inputs and safeguarding protected areas and natural ecosystems would go a long way in conserving nature in the city. “We must encourage eco-friendly housing, use of organic fertilizers and build strong public opinion against excessive construction to support nature,” she said.

It’s hard to put an economic value to nature, but there is ecological, cultural, aesthetic, spiritual and intrinsic value to nature, she added.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Systematic-disposal-of-waste-key-to-nature-conservation-in-cities-Expert/articleshow/29914318.cms

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