NBF and citizens petition BBMP deputy conservator of forests to save 32,756 trees in BSRP

NBF and citizens petition BBMP deputy conservator of forests to save 32,756 trees in BSRP

NBF and citizens petition BBMP deputy conservator of forests to save 32,756 trees in BSRP

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The Namma Bengaluru Foundation (NBF) and concerned citizens have submitted a petition to Shri B L G Swamy, the Deputy Conservator of Forests at the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), emphasizing the urgent need to save 32,756 trees that are at risk due to the Bengaluru Suburban Rail Project (BSRP). The petition highlights the critical importance of preserving these trees to mitigate air pollution, combat the urban heat island effect, and provide essential oxygen to the city.

The recent extreme weather events, such as heat waves and waterlogging, have underscored the necessity for comprehensive environmental conservation measures. The petition stresses that the indiscriminate felling of a large number of trees poses a severe threat to the ecosystem and the city’s resilience against climate change.

Specific concerns raised include:

1. The impending felling of trees along a 148-kilometer stretch, involving 32,572 trees.

2. The proposed cutting of 17,505 trees in the Akkupete depot area, with 13,996 trees within the BBMP jurisdiction.

3. The lack of public access to critical documents such as the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and the Social Impact Assessment (SIA).

The petition urges the BBMP, K-Ride, and relevant authorities to take immediate action by:

1. Avoiding tree cutting where possible and utilizing the existing railway network.

2. Organizing transparent public consultations to address community concerns.

3. Releasing EIA and SIA reports to the public domain.

4. Developing a detailed compensatory plantation plan for the 32,572 trees.

5. Establishing stringent oversight mechanisms to scrutinize tree-felling proposals.

6. Intensifying efforts to transplant trees slated for felling.

7. Fostering interagency collaboration for sustainable urban development.

8. Promoting awareness campaigns to foster a culture of environmental stewardship.

The petition aims to prompt a reconsideration of the project’s environmental impact and the rapidly diminishing green cover in Bengaluru.