What 2023 World Environment Day Meant for Bengaluru

By Apeksha Priya

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Left to right - Rohit, Stuti, Savita, Sonu, Guruprakash and Benedict Paramanand (moderator)

With runaway climate crisis all around us, should we celebrate World Environment Day as it was proposed in 1973 by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), or should we ‘deliberate’ about how to save, protect, renew, rejuvenate our environment?

With a new government in Bengaluru, can we hope for a better future for the city and its ecology? Five leaders in different domains shared their views at a chat over coffee at Starbucks, Vittal Mallya Road on 4th June 2023. It was co-organized by MXR World, co-founded by Dr. Madanmohan Rao, and SustainabilityNext Editor, Benedict Paramanand.

Should be by Default, not by Choice

We have expectations from the new government, but taking this to a broader level, what I feel is sustainability is still by choice. Most of us have made a very conscious decision to move towards sustainability. We must move towards a situation where sustainability becomes by default not always by choice.

Savita Hiremath, the author, Endlessly Green

Collective Vision Needed

We have seen cities in the world which created wonderful visions for themselves. I would love to see a collective vision by start-ups, corporates, government or different groups to see what the city will be about in 20- 30 years, and what things we can change. Focus less on the grandeur part of smart city vision and more on little things and bring a change. Small changes can bring great results.

Stuthi Vijayaraghavan, founder, Urban Venture Labs

Data Driven Approach to City’s Green Management

Whether it is Karnataka Government or whether it is the environment here in Bangalore, how Bert Labs can impact the context in the intersection of Data, AI and energy being consumed, how it can be reduced, has a direct impact on the CO2 emission. Bangalore and Karnataka Government can facilitate the flourishing of technology companies.

This will directly have an impact whether it is large company like Infosys or small company like us. Potential clients, real estate owners, or manufacturing plants can help us create digital transformation.

Rohit Kochar, founder and CEO, Bert Labs

Art and Recycle 

As a curator I have seen artists who use recycled waste to make art and sculptures. I work with people who promote such kind of art and I hope changes like these are also seen in public spaces. Bangalore needs more art from all kinds of materials.

Sonu Mulchandani, founder, eStudio International

Give Data to Government

Government needs data and we should engage with the government continuously. The government today is also looking at innovative ideas and flagship programs. If you give them a larger vision then definitely, they will work with us.

Guruprakash Sastry, Head of Climate Action, Infosys

Everyone concurred that change should begin with each of us acting responsibly before we ask others to change to save our localities, cities, nation and the planet.

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