Towards a green Bangalore
Global warming, climate change, urban flooding, landslides are the result of deforestation.
Anybody who has spent their youth in Bangalore will be shocked as the erstwhile Garden city has become hotter every year and become more polluted.
This is exactly what Reforest India, a Bengaluru organisation, is trying to remedy by planting native saplings in a bid to restore the city’s green cover.
Janet Yegneshwaran, a former landscape artist who moved to Bengaluru a few years ago was distraught as more and more greenery was lost to cement as the city transformed into an urban jungle.
She went door-to-door encouraging and asking citizens to help plant native saplings.
Today, Reforest India has planted almost a lakh such species across urban and rural Bangalore.
Among areas they planted include the Jalahalli Air Force Station, CUPA Geriatric Centre for dogs in Yelahanka & other open welcoming spaces.
Reforest has also been empanelled by the Government of Karnataka to help struggling farmers grow food forests.
Such food forests are where Afforestation and Reforestation programmes are taken up in rural areas where water scarcity is acute and lands barren.
The farmer will be helped with getting agricultural infrastructure from the government and plant native trees, regenerate the soil ecosystem, build biodiversity, increase the soil’s organic carbon that will attract flora and fauna, improve ground water quality, etc.
In fact, Reforest has taken up agro-forestry programmes for a decade now.
They also hope to encourage farmers to start breeding fish in Krishi Hondas or agriculture ponds dug to store water.
They also encourage volunteers of all ages to accompany them on plantation drives.
These Volunteers are a backbone of the organisation who along with RWA’s help identify areas in need of saplings.
Janet hopes to encourage tree planting by involving people from all stratas of society to create an unbiased and healthy environment just like mother earth does.
By Maria Kuruvilla