Earth Day: Green army with NCC volunteers - The New Indian Express

Earth Day: Green army with NCC volunteers

Published: 23rd April 2013 08:54 AM

Last Updated: 23rd April 2013 11:23 AM

On the occasion of Earth Day, which fell on Monday, a green army was formed for the state which will comprise National Cadet Corps (NCC) volunteers. This ‘Eco-Army’, which will be made up of over 70,000 cadets in the state, will function with the joint resources of the NCC Directorate (Kerala & Lakshadweep) and the state Forest Department, Additional Director General Major General B Chakravarty announced here on Monday.

 This army of eco-soldiers is being formed as part of the NCC commemorating 2013 as the Year of Eco-Conservation, the Major General said during the Earth Day observance held at the NCC Directorate at Vazhuthacaud.

 There will be four thrust areas which the year-long programmes will focus on - solid waste management, tree plantation, cleaning of water bodies and energy conservation.

 “Contributing to water conservation by cleaning of water bodies is only natural for us to do since our Naval forces are also consumers,” said Chakravarty. “We would be needing the Forest Department’s advice on planting of trees.” 

 Expressing his appreciation for the scheme, Principal Conservator of Forests (head of Forest Force) R R Verma said the NCC volunteers could definitely help with the planting and maintenance of trees in and around schools.

“The main problem is during summer, when the saplings don’t get enough water and die,” said Verma. “It is all the more problematic because in summer vacations, nobody is around to water them.”

 Another way the soldiers of the proposed ‘Eco-Army’ could help out, according to Verma, was by prompt reporting of forest fires, incidences of which also rose in the summer.

 Explaining the ‘eco-initiative’, Chakravarty said: “No single organisation or individual can hope to reverse this malaise (of massive environmental degradation). What is required is a mass movement of eco-activism by organisations and communities, states and nations.”

 As part of the joint Earth Day celebrations held here, tree saplings were planted on the Directorate premises and a cycle rally of NCC volunteers was also taken out.

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