The growing risk of climate change is common for most of the cities. In Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR), it is further increasing due to ever-increasing carbon emissions and fast-depleting agricultural and forest land.
The risk can be curtailed if state and local bodies along with public participants, work for the urban farming reforms, says a The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) study.
According to TERI's associate director for western region, Anjali Parasnis, “Around four lakh truck trips are made per year from Nashik, Pune and other parts of western Maharashtra, Gujarat and Konkan to supply eggs, milk and vegetables in this region.”
“These trucks consume nearly 400 lakh litres of fuel, leading to 1.71 lakh tonnes of Co2 emissions besides frequent fatal mishaps,” she adds to her comment.
The study says, “All this wastage can be avoided by propagating urban farming that has the potential to revive land use on MMR's 650 sq km wasteland by converting it for agriculture use and thus create employment opportunities for lakhs to boost the region's economy.”
The population in MMR has doubled between 2001 and 2011 and is projected to grow by 50% by 2031. Increasing carbon footprint is leading to an increase in the average day temperature by a few degrees and also in the humidity levels in Mumbai.
The study suggests that if people in the region took up urban farming-that is, vegetable farms, dairies and hatcheries-the truck trips, fuel consumption and emissions can be reduced in a big way.
Such businesses, if promoted by the government, will not only generate self-employment and jobs but will give rise to allied businesses.