To attain sustainable development, it is crucial that we focus not only on the urban centres but also on the well-being and progress of our rural communities, said Union Minister of State for Panchayati Raj Kapil Moreshwar Patil during G20 Environment and Climate Sustainability Working Group (ECSWG) meeting in Mumbai on Monday.
Rural areas, with heavy reliance on agriculture, are highly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, he added.
Pointing to the importance of involving rural communities in protecting the environment, he said that the changing rainfall patterns, droughts and water scarcity, heatwaves and extreme temperatures and increased extreme weather events have posed serious challenges to the livelihood, food security and overall well-being of the rural communities.
Promote promoting renewable energy projects
“Living in harmony with nature has been the way of life in the rural and non-urban areas. India is traditionally known to practice a sustainable lifestyle as a nation. Keeping in tune with this tradition, our Panchayati Raj institutions are actively engaged in promoting renewable energy projects as well as involving rural communities in activities like afforestation drives, waste management, and conservation of water resources to foster a sense of environmental stewardship among citizens,” said Patil.
In her opening remarks, Leena Nandan, G20 India Chair and Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) addressed that a series of focus group discussions had been conducted by the Indian Presidency, over the past three weeks across all the three thematic priorities, where the outcome documents were discussed line-by-line.
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