Posts Tagged ‘sustainability’

World Environment Day 2017 in Pune

Written by Aina on . Posted in India, News, Take Action, Uncategorized

Last Sunday the 18th of June, Nektarina Non Profit and Zest Youth Movement celebrated the World Environment Day in Pune.

Every year since 2014, both organizations have been celebrating the important date gathering hundreds of participants, most of them children and youths.

 In this occasion over 200 participants attended the celebration that started at 7am.

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To commence the event, participants gathered at Sarasbaug where they took an environment oath to then start a walk for the environment that ended up in at Shaniwar Wada. During the walk, participants displayed signs, banners, and flags with slogans and messages about the importance of taking care of the environment and actions to protect it.

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The rally finally arrived at the Mutha River bank for a clean-up in support also to the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan (Clean India Mission ) national government campaign.

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To close the event an empty banner was placed for participants to write inspiring messages about the importance of protecting the environment and particularly about the 2017 World Environment Day theme: “Connecting people to nature” and/or making use of the “I´m with nature” slogan.

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Not simply a celebration, this event is a sample of how the Education for Sustainability initiative mobilizes and brings together communities in activities that help to raise awareness and act towards a sustainable future.

 A big thank you to all the participants and supporters of our event. A special recognition to the school teacher Mrs Anagha Chavan who flagged the rally and of course to India’s E4S Country Manager, Suresh More.35497970645_affbaa2a33_k

Click the below link to check out more pictures of the event

https://www.flickr.com/photos/122900157@N06/albums/72157682359674662/with/35457532556/

Tree planting celebration in Pune’s Bio Diversity Park

Written by Aina on . Posted in India, News, Take Action

Last Friday, 12th of August, was a very special day for us, here at Nektarina. We were celebrating the International Youth Day and our 7th anniversary with a very inspiring activity organized by Suresh More, our E4S Project Manager in India: a tree planting in the city of Pune.

The activity took place early in the morning in the area of Katraj Gujarwadi inside the Bio Diversity Park reservation on the city’s hills and involved the participation of around 60 young children aged 3 to 5 years old, teachers, and representatives of the “Little Diamond” school.

Fifty trees provided by the school, organizers, and supporters of the activity were planted in the Bio Diversity Park reservation, which is an important protected area managed by Pune Municipal Corporation consisting of 978.540 hectares of land on the hills surrounding the city.

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The protected area was created after vast areas of the hills were severely deforested for timber and infrastructural use in the 2000s. Ever since, Pune Municipal Corporation has been protecting the area and promoting its reforestation as the total area represents more than 90% of the city’s green areas, thus has the potential to become the green lungs of this rapid growing city.

We are very satisfied to have been able to organize this meaningful activity involving children from such a young age. The tree planting activity is not only a source of inspiration and knowledge for children and their communities, it also helps to connect and create a bond with nature, with the land, with the origin and growth of a tree, its needs and care. At the same time we are glad to have contributed a little with the reforestation of this area of the city that was formerly so neglected and abused.

We are confident that the experience and the enthusiasm that our young participants showed during the tree planting activity will stay with them forever.

In trees and children there is always hope!

 Click here to check out all the great photos of the activity  

Nektarina Non Profit celebrates its 7th foundation anniversary!

Written by Aina on . Posted in General Information, News, News & Updates

We have prepared this blog entry because today is a very special day for our organization Nektarina Non Profit as we celebrate our 7th birthday.

Every 12th of August for the past 7 years has been a very meaningful day to our organization. Each year we realize how fortunate we have been to keep working in what we believe and love, in spite of any of the difficulties we have encountered along our way.

We feel so proud of all the hard work our organization has taken since its foundation back in 2009 that we want to share with you in this article just a little about what we have been doing ever since.

Nektarina Non Profit was founded in Croatia 7 years ago with one broad idea in mind: highlighting the issues that affect us all globally as a part of the big Earth community. Highlighting them by raising awareness and inspiring action, but most importantly by educating and sharing knowledge about them.

Ever since, the projects we have implemented and collaborated with, have lead us to work mainly on sustainability in its three dimensions: social, environmental, and economic. Specially we have focused to target the younger generations. Not only because they are one of the most affected groups by our unsustainable ways, but because of their potential to shift our world towards a sustainable future.

One of the most relevant examples of our work were the “European Citizens’ Initiatives Youth Forums” organized during 2011 and 2012 across different countries in Central, Eastern and South East Europe, Russia, the Mediterranean and Central Asia. The forums gathered teenagers, students and young professionals to learn, share ideas, knowledge, and inspire action on climate change, sustainable consumption, carbon footprint, renewable energy, and other related topics. The forums were delivered in partnership with the international organizations of the Earth Day Network, 10:10, and the Global Campaign for Climate Action – TckTckTck.

In 2011 we published our first cookbook, “Low Carbon and Delicious”, which shares over 50 recipes accompanied by beautiful pictures from 17 countries around the Mediterranean, providing a simple insight of what “low carbon food” means and how anyone can make a positive impact on the environment from their own kitchen and diet. Don’t miss checking out this colorful, inspiring and simple-to-use cookbook with a low carbon twist here.

Also at the end of that busy year of 2011, we were able to put into practice one of the fundamental pillars of our organization with the Education for Sustainability project. The project emerged from our belief that education is the most important way to bring a fundamental shift in how we think and act towards one another and our planet. Therefore we designed the project with one broad aim: putting sustainability in the curricula of every school.

The implementation of the project has not always been easy but we are proud to say that although the challenges we have faced, Education for Sustainability as of today, is the most important project of our organization. We will continue to put all our efforts to keep it that way and to work towards our goal in the years to come.

If you want to find more about our organization or the Education for Sustainability project, you can find additional information in our websites. We also invite you to get in touch with us if you have any questions or ideas you would like to share with us. Nektarina non Profit and Education for Sustainability are also present in Facebook and Twitter. Stay in touch and up-to-date with our latest work and news following our social networks.

Twitter @nektarina and @edu4sustain

Facebook @nektarinanonprofit  and @Edu4Sustainability

Finally we would like to thank all the people and organizations that have supported or collaborated with us during all these years. We hope to keep connecting with new and past organizations, volunteers, colleagues, students, teachers, etc. But most of all, we hope we keep inspiring one another in our work towards a sustainable world.

Note: Nektarina Non Profit, now based in the UK, is the initiator and leading organization of the Education for Sustainability project.

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International Youth Day: Drawing competition

Written by Aina on . Posted in India, News, Upcoming Events

This upcoming Friday the 12th of August will be a very special day for Nektarina Non Profit.

First of all because we will be celebrating the 7th anniversary of our organization and secondly because Nektarina’s birthday coincides with a very important world day celebration: the International Youth Day as established since 1999 by the United Nations General Assembly.

Especially this year’s International Youth Day means a lot to our organization, not only because we mainly work with youths, but because 2016 theme “Youth Leading Sustainability – The Road to 2030: Eradicating Poverty and Achieving Sustainable Consumption and Production” directly relates to our mission for working towards a sustainable world.

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Nektarina will be celebrating these important dates by fostering a drawing competition among school children and youths in the city of Pune in India with the theme “Healthy and Sustainable Earth”. The activity is part of our Education for Sustainability project and aims to showcase children’s and youth’s views and thoughts about a healthy and sustainable Earth. At the same time, the activity will encourage the creativity and expression of children and youths, and most of all, it will allow them to reflect about how they can contribute to a healthy and sustainable Earth in their daily lives.

Zest Youth Movement, our India partner, is on the ground organizing the activity and encouraging as much schools as possible to participate in the competition.

The activity will be taking place during the month of August and we expect to have a great number of participants aged between 7 and 14 years old, which will be divided into a junior and senior category. Each group category will be given 2 different subtopics for them to choose and dedicate their drawing in relation to the main theme of a “Healthy and Sustainable Earth”.

We expect to have a selection of the best drawings by the end of August. The selection criteria will be based on the relation with the topics and the overall message of the drawing. Students with the best drawings will receive a prize and a certificate of recognition for their outstanding participation.

We look forward to start seeing the surely amazing works that participants will be creating and we hope you too. Keep checking out for more updates about the competition in our social networks and don’t miss our special blog entry that we will publish on Friday to celebrate Nektarina’s birthday.

Let’s celebrate our youth and keep working to achieve a more prosperous and sustainable Earth for all!

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Our visit to the Resource efficient TERI retreat for environment awareness and training, New Delhi, India

Written by Marianne on . Posted in General Information, India, News & Updates, Publications

In the framework of the Education for Sustainability project, Nektarina Non Profit and its Indian partner Zest Youth Movement attended the 15th Delhi Sustainable Development Summit that took place in New Delhi, India in February 2015.

In the margins of this major conference we learnt that The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI, also organizer of DSDS) had established a sustainable campus on the outskirts of Delhi, as a best example for people of how natural resources should efficiently be used.

Thus we took the opportunity of our presence in Delhi and the possibility offered by TERI to visit the RETREAT (Resource efficient TERI retreat for environment awareness and training).

“ Renewable energy is seen as an effective option for ensuring access to modern energy services in our vast country. Local and regional environmental problems associated with the generation of conventional energy have provided a strong argument for enhancing the role of renewable energy within the broad energy development plans of the country.

With this in mind TERI developed this complex at Gual Pahari, Gurgaon, as an example of sustainable habitat.

The Gual Pahari campus is situated 35 km south of Delhi, at Gurgaon, Haryana, covering an area of 36.5 hectares of beautifully landscaped surroundings. When TERI bought the land, it was totally rocky and devoid of any vegetation. Intense plantation activities were undertaken by scientists and researchers for improving the fertility of the land and today it is covered with lush green forests and gardens full of beautiful flowers. Amidst this greenery and beauty lies the RETREAT, a model of sustainable habitat.”

After driving almost an hour from the center of Delhi, we entered the campus at the gate and left our car there. Vehicles are indeed strictly forbidden to enter the campus. We continued our journey with a battery run vehicle. Only those vehicles are allowed, to avoid pollution, keep air clean and keep human beings healthier and provide more oxygen. Actually, at many places in India, the government has asked to use battery run vehicles like on the world famous Taj Mahal site. The acid rains induced because of air pollution have already affected the monument. Even in many universities and companies campus, battery run vehicles or other wise vehicles are used, like at the University of Pune for example. Actually this is very good option that should mandatorily be used in all industrial, educational, historical places.

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A representative of TERI welcomed us at the main office building and then brought us through the campus and show us the main departments and projects developed there.

The campus was inaugurated in 2000 by the former Prime Minister of India, Mr Atal Bihari Vajpayee. It is mainly known as the Teri Green Campus.

First went to the Micro propagation technology park and saw how the team develops and produces microbe-free plants of various species. Millions of plants are thus supplied to the industries and farmers.

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Then we went to see the TEAM process installation witch permits generation of biogas and manure from biogas generation from various sources of organic waste.

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The rainwater purification basin is established as an integral part of the campus. Rainwater is stored in one tank where mud and other material settled at the bottom of the tank, coupled with oxygen, kills unwanted small microorganisms. The water is then used for the campus’ irrigation needs.

The main building complex is build in a way to benefit the most from natural resources and to operate in the most autonomous and sustainable way.

“This climate-responsive building is intended to serve as a model sustainable habitat, based on new and clean technologies.”

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No electricity from outside is used. The building was constructed in a way to naturally keep the temperature temperate in all seasons thanks to a smart use of sunrays orientations and tree planting which gives more shadow in summer and allows the sun to enter the rooms once their lost their leaves in winter.

Also, to maintain the temperature in the rooms an underground tunnel has been build. The tunnel out let is open at one end. The air then goes through a motor that ventilates it and push it towards the different levels and rooms of the building among a chimney mechanism. There are two out lets in each room. The other one exhausts out the hot/cold air to that the temperature is maintained.

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“The temperature in the living area is maintained at a comfortable 20° C to 30° C throughout the year, without the use of an air conditioner. The concept is based on the observation that underground cellars are naturally cooler in summers and warmer in winters. In ancient and medieval India, a similar concept was applied in the construction of buildings such as that seen in the Red Fort at Delhi. To circulate the air in the living area, each room has been fitted with a ‘solar chimney’ and the warm air rises and escapes through this chimney creating an air current. Cool air from the underground tunnels, helped by two blowers fitted in the tunnels, rush in to replace the warm air. In winter, the cold air in the rooms is replaced by warm air from the tunnels.”

On the top of the buildings solar power plants are fixed and provide all necessary energy (light, hot water, etc.). The inner parts are constructed in such way that there is more air ventilation and circulation.

“The RETREAT takes full advantage of the abundant solar energy and has used innovative ways to tap this energy by installing 24 solar water heaters to provide 2000 liters of hot water to the living quarters. Photovoltaic panels help capture solar energy and store it in a bank of batteries, which is the main source of power at night. Individual panels, power lights outside the building. Even the water pump is powered by solar panels.”

The building is used as a research and learning center, has accommodation and catering capacities and is used as a venue for hosting groups and conferences.

Afterwards we visited the biomass gasifier based power generation site. All food waste and other waste material are used to produce energy through a process of decomposition with help of water. Gas comes out of it and is used for cooking and other purposes. The gas is supplied through pipes to different parts where needed.

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“During the day, the building is powered by a biomass gasifier, which is fed by firewood, twigs, branches, and crop stubble from the campus itself. In conventional devices that burn firewood directly, a large part of the energy is lost. In a biomass gasifier this wood is burnt twice as efficiently. Any surplus energy that is generated is used to recharge the battery bank. This battery bank is thus served by two sources of power, namely the photovoltaic panels and the gasifier.” 

We saw then the wasted water management system where all the wasted water from the campus is collected and organically treated. Around lakhs of liters the water is then used to tree plantation watering all over the campus.

“At this complex, a novel method to recycle waste water for irrigation has been introduced. Sewage is collected in a settling tank and the sludge settles at the bottom and a part of the waste is decomposed at this stage by microbes. Next, the water passes through a bed of soil that also has some reeds, that adapt well to water logged conditions. The roots of these plants act as a filter, removing and absorbing many of the toxic substances from the waste water. The water that comes out at this stage is of irrigation quality or even for bathing purposes.”

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What a great breathe of fresh air visiting this campus after several days spent in the highly polluted city of Delhi!

Such initiatives offer a great overview on the different options that organizations could use to contribute in a more sustainable way of life in India. Practically, it is still very challenging to spread those approaches towards the whole society, but we deeply believe that thanks to those projects and best practices, and through a quality education on sustainable development from the youngest age, future generations would progressively adopt and generalize those methods. Such training institutes should be set up all across India so to allow the sharing of knowledge all across the country.

 

Source of the quotations

TERI’s website

Participating in the 15th Delhi Sustainable Development Summit

Written by Marianne on . Posted in India, News, News & Updates, Take Action, Uncategorized, Upcoming Events

Nektarina, together with its Indian partner Zest Youth Movement, is glad to inform on its participation in the 15th Delhi Sustainable Development Summit (DSDS) that will take place in New Delhi, India from 5-7 of February 2015.

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“The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI), since 2001, annually organizes the DSDS, an International Summit to facilitate the exchange of knowledge on all aspects of sustainable development. Over the past 14 years, the Summit has hosted 37 current and former Heads of State, ministers from over 50 countries, and delegates from across continents. Each year, the Summit brings together Heads of State and Government, Nobel Laureates, business leaders, and academicians to address issues of global sustainability.”

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DSDS 15 will take place under the theme “”Sustainable Development Goals and Dealing with Climate Change”. This year is indeed marked by a crucial agenda on the way towards sustainable development through the framework of the Post-2015 Development Agenda definition process and launch, and the negotiations towards an agreement under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) expected to be reached in the 21st Conference of the Parties in December 2015.

We are active in India since 2012 to implementing the Education for Sustainability project by approaching governmental institutions in order to convince them that teaching sustainable development at youngest ages in school is a necessity, networking among local, national and international organisations having similar goals, conducting a series of activities and events with schools and civil society and promoting our goal in the media, online and offline.

Fostered by the positive feedbacks and encouraging progress we made so far, we see our participation to DSDS 2015 as a great opportunity to spread our word and contribute to the way toward a sustainable India.

For more information about DSDS: Official website

The Man Who Grew A Forest

Written by Anam Gill on . Posted in Anam's blog: Global issues, E-Magazine, General Information, Green Economy, India, News, News & Updates, Take Action

Back in the 50s a tale was written about Elzeard Bouffier . The Man Who Planted Trees was a tale written by Jean Giono and the character of Elzeard Buoffier was created to make readers fall in love with trees. After reading the story based on a fictitious character made me recall a living person who single handedly grew an extensive forest on 550 hectare sandbar.

 Jadav Payang has dedicated many years of his life to planting trees on the island leaving his home and education behind. Majuli Island is a sandbar that happens to be the largest river island on earth located in Northeast India. The forest planted by Jadav is known as Molai forest after his nickname Molai.

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Jadav Payeng, Photo Source: Google

Back in 1979 when Payeng was 16 years old floods washed a large number of snakes on the shore of the sandbar. A number of snakes died due to the hot weather as they didn’t have any shelter. Payeng was taken aback by this carnage and tried to reach out to the forest department to grow trees there. They told him to grow bamboo himself and nobody was ready to be of any help. That was a turning point in Payeng’s life that motivated a single man to grow a forest that surpassed the scale of New York’s Central Park. Seeing Jadav Payeng makes one believe in humanity and selflessness. It is interesting to note that the sprawling forest now is home to many endangered animals. The story of Jadav is an inspiration for the world filling the wide chasms of hopelessness surrounding us.

In a world where ambition drives people crazy Jadav Payeng does give people a message of love for nature. By pruning and watering the plants morning and evening he does tell us that there are other living things sharing the planet with us whom we should look after. Payeng delightfully tells that it was an experience where the fauna and flora flourished including endangered animals like the Royal Bengal tiger and one- horned rhino.

 We all like to talk about saving the planet and hardly act on what we preach. All the conferences and seminars happening behind closed doors on environment and conservation might not have Jadav Payeng in their midst because he is busy doing something important. He is putting our words into action. We don’t need big words anymore we need action driven by a genuine passion and commitment to preserve what we already have. If the world has agreed upon any definition of a hero, Jadav Payeng is surely my hero whom I greatly admire for his dedication and commitment. What he has done and is still doing is truly extra ordinary.