The city of Joy, Kolkata adds another feather to its cap as it has been awarded with the Best Cities of 2016 award held in Mexico City.
Leaving Mumbai, Chennai and New Delhi behind, Kolkata bagged the award in recognition of its inspiring and innovative programme with regard to solid waste management. It is the only Indian city, along with the 10 other cities from around the world, to receive this prestigious award.
Other cities that won the awards are Addis Adaba (Transportation), Copenhagen (Adaptation in Action), Curitiba (Sustainable Communities), Sydney and Malborne (Building Energy Efficiency), Paris (Adaptation Plans and Assessments), Portland (Climate Action Plans and Inventories), Seoul (Social Equity and Climate Change), Shenzhen (Finance and Economic Development), and Yokohama (Clean Energy). C40 chairman and Rio de Janeiro Mayor Eduardo Paes gave away the award.
The C40 Cities Awards, granted in 10 categories, recognize the best and boldest work being done by mayors to fight climate change and protect people from risks.
“In our country, only Kolkata metropolitan has got this award. It is a proof of the relentless effort that the state government under chief minister Mamata Banerjee is giving for the development of the state,” Dilip Yadav, chairman of the Uttarpara Municipality, told PTI over phone from Mexico City after receiving the prestigious award from Paes.
“This motivates us for more performance for the sustainability of this project. Our motto is participation of the common people. Being chairman, I have visited 50,000 house and have made our people aware about the benefits of solid waste management,” he added.
The city’s ‘Solid Waste Management Improvement Project’ has achieved segregation of waste at its source, with further waste segregation occurring at transfer stations, which has helped to eradicate open dumping and burning of waste and to limit the concentration of methane gas generated in landfill sites.
Kolkata Municipal Development Authority CEO and Secretory Municipal Affairs Onkar Singh Meena said, “The project involved 100 per cent door to door collection of solid waste, segregation and recycling by way of compositing which is sold in the market.”
Meena, who is the head of the Kolkata delegation to the Mayors Summit, said, “One significant aspect of this project is that ragpickers are part of it.”
C40 is a network of the world’s mega cities committed to addressing climate change. Created and led bt cities, it is focused on tackling climate change and driving urban action that reduces greenhouse gas emissions and climate risks, while increasing the health, wellbeing and economic opportunities of Urban citizens.
The award has come at a time when Banerjee is pitching herself as a competitor to Prime Minister Narendra Modi ahead of the 2019 general elections. It will certainly add strength to the clamor of her being an effective administrator especially when climate change is such an important issue all over India.