New Delhi: Environment conservation is a commitment and not a compulsion for India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Wednesday, asserting he believes development and nature can go hand-in-hand. India strives to meet an increased portion of its power demand from renewable and alternative sources of energy, he said in a message read out at the World Sustainable Development Summit (WSDS) being organised by The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) here.
The country is devising solutions to diverse urban challenges, particularly those related to pollution and cleanliness, through latest technology and innovation, he said. ”Extolling the Earth as Mother, our scriptures say, ‘The Earth is our Mother and we are her children’. The sentiment of universal brotherhood has constantly guided the nation and its people. With such a glorious culture and philosophy of lofty traditions of living in harmony with nature, it is only natural for India to remain at the forefront of global efforts for environment protection,” he said.
”We firmly believe that development and nature can go hand-in-hand. With the objective of making sustainable development an integral part of everyday life, we launched Mission LIFE. The objective of this Mission is to adopt a lifestyle for the environment. Environment is today not just a global cause, but also a personal as well as collective responsibility for every individual,” he said.
Modi said environment conservation is a commitment and not a compulsion for India. Human empowerment is impossible without a better environment and the way forward is through collectiveness rather than selectiveness, the prime minister said.
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India’s initiative to adopt a healthier and cleaner lifestyle include upgrading infrastructure to encourage electric mobility, increased use of biofuel for transportation, leverage hydrogen as a fuel, convert waste to wealth and water treatment plants to ensure clean rivers, the prime minister said.
The country has adopted a multi-dimensional approach to chart a long-term roadmap for sustainable and environment-friendly lifestyle, be it through measures for upliftment and empowerment of the poor, or encouraging organic farming, or protecting farmers from the vagaries of nature, he said. Union Environment Minister Bhupender Yadav said India is emerging as an inspiration for countries across the globe under the leadership of PM Modi ”particularly on the fact that economic development and conservation of environment can go hand in hand”. He said the country has demonstrated that it has never been a part of the problem and is contributing significantly to become a part of the solution.
The focus on ‘green growth’ in the Union Budget validates how sustainable development has been mainstreamed in Indian policy-making process through a visionary approach, Yadav said.