Preserve Green Doon: Dehradun is one of the oldest cities in India and became the capital of Uttarakhand after it was formed in the year 2000. Since then there has been rapid overall development. After becoming the capital the population has increased tenfold. There were lots of pressures on the infrastructure due to which lots of trees were cut down, real estate boomed and lots of high rises occupied the scenery. The greenery which was a part of Doon has been destroyed and pollution has risen up owing to population growth and massive development. Geographically it was not designed to be a big city and the land which was earlier covered with trees has given way to commercial and residential buildings. Commercialization has led to massive pollution with excess use of plastics. Due to lack of proper management by the municipality, proper disposal of plastic wastes has been a great nuisance for our city. Plastics are non-degradable and most of it goes to landfills and garbage site for recycling but the littering of plastics on the roads can cause pollution as well as harm the local fauna. It also blocks water drains and seeps into the rivers and pollutes the water source which can adversely affect our health. U Turn Foundation has been inspiring positive change by connecting citizens of Dehradun, from all walks of life, with environmental issues that affects their daily lives in their homes, workplaces and neighborhoods.
Adopt a Plant: While campaigning for ‘Preserve Green Doon’, we found there was great opportunity and promise in Tree Plantation. There was something missing in Tree Plantation Process that we were witnessing around us. There were a lot of people participating in such initiatives all over town and planting trees yet after a few days, all that remains of the effort is some barely noticeable saplings. While the gesture is noble as also the intent of any and all such activities, what everyone seems to be missing out on is that a tree in a spot of dirt will only live so long and the success of these campaign’s lies in ensuring that these plants survive for posterity. Tree Plantation is not a Day’s passion but a duty like a Father/ Mother has while raising his/her child that span over years. There has to be only one way to describe this campaign – “ADOPT A PLANT”. Like any adoption, one can either adopt a plant another has sown/planted or take one up for the cause and adopt one through U Turn Foundation’s efforts.
Anti-Polythene Campaign: Since inception of U Turn Foundation we’ve had strong aversion to polythene usage because of it’s never ending non degradable life span and the irreversible damage it was inflicting on earth and on life that earth sustains. We have been cleaning roadsides of non-degradable waste, have set up dustbins, requested the Municipal Board for regular cleaning of bins, talking to people about the ill-effects of polythene.
The Foundation is strongly pursuing the idea of a polythene free Dehradun.
Carry your Bag: While the Govt. has instituted statuettes to ban the use of polythene bags, execution of this law (as is the case for most legislation) has been lost in transition.
Demand controls the supply. So to control the supply of polythene we have to cut down on it’s demand ( in simple word stop asking for polythene). And before we stop asking for polythene we need to have a substitute with us and the best substitute is a Cloth Bag. Has anyone thought what was being used to bring groceries from the market before polythene bags came into existence?.
We have started “Carry your Bag” Campaign in Dehradun. Just imagine if 1 out of 100 people in Dehradun cuts down on usage of 5 polythene bags per day as a result of cloth bags then that would amount to a reduced demand of 100000 poly bags every day. This calculation is our motivation in pursuing “Carry your Bag” Campaign. We have started collecting unused cloths (strong enough to carry decent weight) from our members and volunteers. We are making bags out of these clothes. Sewing these bags will generate income for a family in Dehradun and they can be obtained thorugh us for a nominal price of Rs 10 per piece.
The Foundation’s teams is visiting local markets explaining the public the harm of polythene bags and urging them to use cloth bags contributing towards protecting the earth. The Foundation has distributed thousands of free cloth bags to the general public in shopping areas all around Dehradun.
Just remember to ‘Carry your Bag’ whenever you go shopping and think about the calculation and you would be carrying the campaign ahead.
Uttarakhand Non Biodegradabale Garbage Control Act: U Turn Foundation has been trying since its inception for polythene ban in Uttarakhand.
The Foundation drafted an act with the help of our esteemed advisers and consultants which was presented to the honorable “Chief Minister of Uttarakhand”.
Signature campaigns were conducted all across the length and breadth of Dehradun, rishikesh, chakrata, narendar nagar. The Foundation’s team members and volunteers conducted door to door awareness campaigns on the importance of this act. More than 20,000 signatures were recorded in support of this cause. Starting from the honorable speaker of Uttarakhand, member of parliaments, district magistrates, city magistrate, doctors, lawyers and people from all walks of life supported the movement.
The signature campaign continues online.