Sunday, October 30, 2011

More on Chennai's missing trees

In an earlier post on Chennai's tree-cover deficit Mr Ram Kumar of H block says,'Let's see if we can achieve 20% green-cover in our apartment complex, as little baby steps, and see if we can expand it to our neighbourhood as well...
We have started on 'little baby steps'; and, under community tree-planting with PropCare support, six neem,as many badam, and two shenbagum saplings have been planted till date.
The challenge is to locate suitable space in the Mantri complex for sustaining our community planting programme. The need for tree-planting on a sizeable scale can hardly be understated. As I see it, we would need to compensate with tree-cover carbon emission by 1500 plus air-conditioners, and half as many cars when Mantri Synergy becomes fully functional.
And our modest target is to plant a hundred saplings of shade-giving trees. Experts recommend vennangu, pungam, poovarasu, punnai, and badam.Some of us would also like to see fruit-bearing varieties such as mango,jackfruit, sapota and the like. We would like to do community planting, preferably, with the co-operation of Mantri's landscape architect.In this regard we have already e-mailed the office of Mr Sekar James, seeking guidance in locating suitable space for planting canopy trees. Their response is awaited.
Meanwhile, The Hindu article to which Mr Ram Kumar refers in his post speaks of the need for truly eco-friendly utilization of the open space reserve (OSR)that developers are obliged to set aside for the benefit the neighbourhood. Our OMR neibourhood can do with lots more canopy trees.
Dr.D.Narasimhan, Associate Professor in Botany at Madras Christian College,who has been coordinating a tree census in the city,is quoted as saying that the mandatory OSR for developing townships "gets swallowed by built structures, parks with scanty greenery,temples and the like, which are not effective in the role of green spaces that could rejuvenate the urban environment.”
Viewed in this perspective we need to take a closer look at, and focus on Mantri's OSR (see photo) for planting greening trees that provide much-needed shade on our driveway.So as to facilitate pedestrians.

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