BHUBANESWAR: The State Government has initiated a collaborative partnership with the University of Chicago, India Centre in energy efficiency and pollution control.
An expert group from the University made a presentation on the possibilities of collaboration at a high level meeting chaired by Chief Secretary Aditya Prasad Padhi in the Secretariat here on Wednesday.
“The State Government is working on pollution control and energy-saving measures for some years. We would like to have an independent study of the approaches adopted so far by Odisha and bring in international practices for making those more effective at the field level,” Padhi said.
Replying to media queries, Development Commissioner R Balakrishnan said, “We have had an engagement with Chicago University through Odisha Knowledge Hub (OKH) programmes. Now we are holding preliminary talks with UChicago Centre in Delhi.”
He said Odisha will gain from their worldwide knowledge and expertise on monitoring pollution control and improving energy efficiency.
Balakrishnan further said the areas of collaboration in the matters of training and capacity building are also being explored with the four-member team led by programme manager, Tata Centre for Development at UChicago Centre Cheistha Kochhar.
Country Director of Energy Policy Institute at Chicago (EPIC) India Anant Sudarshan said the objective of EPIC is to bring economic research to the forefront to solve energy and environment challenges.
“Currently, we are working with the Government of India and various States in reduction of power theft, increasing energy efficiency, emissions trading to control industrial air pollution, water quality monitoring, exploring new decentralised opportunities, crop burning, electricity reforms, access to electricity and its distribution,” he said.
Sudarshan said Odisha Government has taken a lot of initiatives in these matters including pollution monitoring and accessing renewable energy.
EPIC would like to collaborate with the State Government and Odisha State Pollution Control Board to bring about a qualitative and quantitative improvement in these initiatives, he added.
The State Government had an engagement with Chicago University during the recent visit of bibliographer and director of Digital South Asia Library (DSAL) James Nye to deliver his lecture at OKH.