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PROJECT: Urban health and climate resilience in India

Taru Leading Edge and ICLEI South Asia, in partnership with CDKN, launched this Knowledge Basis Project in India in July 2019.

Context

Taru and its consortium partners have been working on various climate urban health initiatives for many years. Their experience suggests that two major challenges affecting the environment and health —urban air pollution and heat stress —can be mitigated by policy change and technological innovation. The Government of India recognises these issues are among the biggest challenges currently facing Indian cities. The National Clean Air Programme (NCAP) has been launched to tackle the increasing air pollution problem across the country in a comprehensive and time bound manner. Building on the ground-breaking Ahmedabad Heat Action Plan (HAP) released in 2013, momentum is building toward developing and implementing early warning systems and preparedness plans for extreme heat at the city, state, and national levels. In 2018, based on guidance provided by the central government, 13 states and over 30 cities have adopted or are developing heat action plans. India is one of the first countries in the world to develop a comprehensive Cooling Action plan which has a long-term vision to address the cooling requirement across sectors.

Project Objective

To design an air pollution and heatwave management toolkit, school environmental monitoring program and engage with targeted national and city level governmental and non-governmental actors to support its uptake in development planning.

Project activities and outputs

The project will design and adopt planning toolkits for Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) after having consultations with them and other stakeholders. This is to enhance the urban planning capacities of the targeted cities in addressing climate-related health risks through better data management with a greater focus on vulnerable population segments such as migrant working men, children, women etc.

To educate school children on the challenges of their own environment and develop them as Earth Leaders and agents of change to disseminate knowledge, create awareness, trainings will be given to the students and teachers for designing the sensor systems. The website/dashboard using IT capabilities will also be developed.

Garages and idea clinics will be conducted and organised. Amplifiers and regional webinars will be conducted. Video nuggets will also be developed.

Outputs from the project include:

  1. An easy to understand toolkit contextualised for Surat and also scalable to other cities with relevant case studies and infographics
  2. Data collection sensor systems installed
  3. A monitoring website/dashboard with open data collected from the schools
  4. One national level and one city level event
  5. 2 regional webinars
  6. 2 short videos of one – two minutes each

Timeframe: 1st July 2019 – 30th June 2020

Partners: Taru Leading Edge, Sahamanthran and Urban health and Climate Resilience Center (UHCRC)

Photo: Courtesy of Neil Palmer, CIAT

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