In the wake of increasing air pollution levels in Delhi-NCR, a national movement for clean air ‘Good Air Summit’, was organized at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium on November 13.
The 1st edition of the Good Air Summit is a part of a larger movement for Good Air by health advocacy IHW Council that seeks to reach 50 crore people by 2025.
Let Me Breathe was a community partner bringing in the voice of the citizens.
Policymakers, children, and youth, who were present at the summit, pledged to act for cleaner air.
Over 1500 students joined the Good Air Movement
About 1500 students of 17 educational institutions, including schools, colleges, universities, and research institutions, attended the event. Out of them, 10 students of Delhi schools being awarded the title of ‘Young Ambassadors of Good Air’.
The students portrayed their creative side by performing skits and singing to present their views on the increasing gravity of air pollution.
“I want to be honest here. I burst crackers this Diwali but after coming to the event, I’ve realized the hazardous effects of bursting crackers on the environment. I want to compensate that and do everything I can to save the environment.” said Bhavya Tripathy, a 7th class student of Bharti Public School, Mayur Vihar.
Another student, Nayonika Roy of VVDAV Public School, Vikaspuri, spoke about her passion to preserve the environment and improve the quality of air. “Why is the clean air not an urgent agenda for the government and opposition? India desperately needs political intent and action to tackle air pollution. It’s high time that we close all loopholes and present a clear agenda to tackle air pollution.” she said.
Plant trees, save water and conserve energy: Javadekar
Prakash Javadekar, Minister of Environment, Forest, and Climate Change, who could not be present due to ill health congratulated the effort through a video message.
“We are a part of the environment and it is a very important part of our lives. Plant trees, save water, and conserve energy – we should make every effort to save our environment,” he said.
Justice Swatanter Kumar, Former Supreme Court Judge and Former Chairperson, National Green Tribunal (NGT), Dr. Ajay Mathur, Director General, The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), and Dr. A K. Agarwal, Chairman, Motherland International Foundation were present at the event.
“There are at least 10 sources of air pollution that affect both outdoor and indoor air quality, starting from widespread construction activities to the burning of waste and crops, and vehicular pollution. But is clean air not the right of a citizen? Is it not essential to exercise the right to life as guaranteed by the Indian Constitution? My message to all of you is, please rise to the occasion,” said Justice Swatanter Kumar.
The Good Air Movement is a nationwide drive that aims to cover Kashmir to Kanyakumari and Ahmedabad to Aizawl by 2025 to create mass awareness and mobilize public action towards good air goals as well as engage and educate 50 crore people, a statement from the IHWC said.