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Public Acceptance, Participation Important For Success Of Any Env Policy: Atishi

Public Acceptance, Participation Important For Success Of Any Env Policy: Atishi

Delhi Environment Committee chairperson and AAP MLA Atishi has stressed on the importance of public acceptance and participation in government schemes, citing the example of "odd-even" car-rationing scheme to combat the winter smog and pollution in the national capital. Speaking at the ''Daring Cities 2020'' conference on Thursday, Atishi talked about the increased importance of social and public pressure created in implementing sustainable development measures.

New Delhi: Delhi Environment Committee chairperson and AAP MLA Atishi has stressed on the importance of public acceptance and participation in government schemes, citing the example of “odd-even” car-rationing scheme to combat the winter smog and pollution in the national capital. Speaking at the ”Daring Cities 2020” conference on Thursday, Atishi talked about the increased importance of social and public pressure created in implementing sustainable development measures.

“The importance of public acceptance and public participation to make any environmental policy a resounding success can be seen through the successful odd-even car-rationing campaign for combating the winter smog and pollution in New Delhi,” she said. Speaking as part of a panel on Knowledge Brokering for Climate Compatible Development, Atishi highlighted the key features which sustainable development policies must necessarily incorporate in order to be successful and effective.

She emphasised the need for environmentalists to devise solutions that bridge ecological and sustainable development with the pressing needs of the community at large. “The policy initiatives taken by the AAP government to provide affordable electricity and water supply to the citizens of New Delhi, showcase how policies that take into account public interest and financial viability had successfully paved the way for sustainable ecological development in the city,” she said.

On the issue of water supply, Atishi spoke about how the Delhi government had followed a dual policy of endeavouring to provide piped water to every household in New Delhi, alongside ensuring that households consuming less than 20,000 litres of water a day were not charged for the same. “Contrary to the initial opposition by environmentalists fearing overuse and wastage of water when provided free of cost, the policy had actually encouraged a trend of water conservation amongst the general public. Additionally, the policy dealt a serious blow to the illegal pilferage and supply of water to hitherto unmetered households, by incentivising them to come under the ambit of the government’s water supply network,” she said.

Atishi said the policy of the government to provide free electricity for consumption up to 200 units, and subsidised power for consumption up to 400 units per household, had encouraged a trend of electricity conservation. “This policy not only provided the city’s vast population of urban poor with affordable electricity but also created a path for the private electricity distributors in New Delhi to turn financially viable, and consequently make a shift to distributing electricity henceforth produced from renewable sources,” she added.

The conference was organised by the City of Bonn and ICLEI, with the support of the German government.

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