July 24, 2024

The meeting will be held in Bengaluru from February 9 to February 11.

The meeting will be held in Bengaluru from February 9 to February 11.

Photo: AFP

Bangalore: The first G20 environment meeting is scheduled to be held on February 9-11 in Bengaluru at the Taj West End.
For preparation and better coordination, a planning meeting between Leena Nandan, Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC) and Vandita Sharma, Chief Secretary to the Government of Karnataka was held on January 21 in Bengaluru.

Aspects related to branding, security, venue management, cultural events showcasing the traditions of Karnataka and other logistical arrangements were discussed.

Nandan requested the state government to provide branding spaces at prominent locations to promote the meeting. While appreciating the ambience of Bengaluru and its green surroundings, the Union Secretary also requested the Chief Secretary to facilitate an excursion tour of the G20 delegates to the Bannerghatta Biological Park. The Chief Secretary assured full support to make the first G20 environment meeting scheduled in Bengaluru, a great success.

The Union Secretary, during his discussions with the Chief Secretary, highlighted and appreciated the innovative Information Technology solutions developed by the Karnataka State Forest Department to ensure faster delivery of public services and real time monitoring of natural resources. A key initiative is e-Parihara, an online application that helps process and approve ex-gratia claims in human-animal conflict cases; thus, bringing transparency and efficiency in the processing of claims.

Similarly, e-Gastu an Android-based platform capture-timber facility provides near real-time stock of timber available in government timber depots and enables e-auction facilities for timber/other produce in forests in government timber depots. The Geo-Spatial Forest Information System developed by the Karnataka Forest Department is a unique platform that uses Remote Sensing and GIS technology and provides a spatial database of all notified forest lands in the State, providing access to the notice of forest land, village maps, forests. maps and digitized notified forests at cadastral level.

The Forest Fire Management System is a comprehensive solution for planning, mitigation and analysis of forest fires that provides forest fire risk zonation mapping, fire start vulnerability mapping, and burned area assessment with a robust distribution system. active forest fire alerts to ensure that all fire incidents are addressed and mitigated in a timely manner.

The G20 delegates are scheduled to visit Kalkere Arboretum and Bannerghatta Biological Park in Bengaluru. At Kalkere, delegates will have the opportunity to visualize and experience the four main forest ecosystems of Karnataka state. The State Forest Department will also showcase the forest restoration models adopted in these ecosystems and the successful revival of animal biodiversity in these areas.

The Bannerghatta Biological Park will present a state-of-art butterfly park and animal safaris to the delegates. Karnataka Forest Department will also promote the flagship model of ecotourism, Jungle Lodges Resort, which is very popular among nature lovers, worldwide.

The Tourism Commissioner said that Karnataka’s rich heritage of handicrafts and textiles will be showcased through pavilions at the venue. The Secretary, on Culture, said that artistic depiction of Karnataka by Nadaswaram, Ayana Dance Company’s performance and Sumukha Rao’s flute recital were planned. These events will showcase the rich cultural and artistic heritage of Karnataka, ensuring that delegates take the flavor of Karnataka with them.

The Secretary of MoEF&CC praised these initiatives and stated that they will be shared with all G 20 countries for adoption and replication.

India will hold the Presidency of the G20 for one year till 30 November 2023. The forum will bring together G20 member countries, guest countries and international organizations invited by India. Through the Sherpa Track, 13 Working Groups and 2 Initiatives will meet under India’s Presidency to discuss priorities and provide recommendations. Environment, Climate & Sustainability is one of the working groups under the Sherpa Track.

Four Meetings of the Environment and Climate Sustainability Working Group (ECSWG) are scheduled, which will be hosted by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEF&CC). ECSWG discussions will focus on the agenda of ‘Promotion of Blue Economy with Coastal Sustainability’, ‘Restoration of Degraded Lands and Ecosystems’ and ‘Enhancement of Biodiversity’ and ‘Strengthening of Circular Economy’.

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