Last June, Chennai recorded a nine year high of 42 degree Celsius and most importantly this temperature was recorded at Nungambakkam, a well known residential area. This was just one highlight of a scorching summer that Chennai experienced last year. As we prepare to face yet another bout of solar excess, we have to address the increasing climate extremes and the need to have a robust strategy to revert to the green, comparatively colder summers. Surprise as it may be to many, Chennai was not always this hot and actually experienced monsoon, winters and even a good amount of sea breeze during the summers that made life much easier when the mercury rose.
The connection between local climate patterns and forest cover has been very apparent and obvious but gets little attention due to the absence of a collective consciousness from the city. A study done by a group of scientists from US and Netherlands on Meso-scale climate change due to lowland deforestation in the maritime tropics summaries that sea breeze was considerably stronger in an island assumed to be completely covered with forest than when the vegetation has been transformed to grassland or worse, artificial constructions using concrete.
At Michelin, there is a strong sense of responsibility towards deforestation due to industrial development. The focus towards responsible growth and initiatives based on this focus results in careful audit of the environmental impact. At Thervoy, Kandigai, Michelin has started planting saplings at its industrial site. The saplings are planted inside the manufacturing facility as part of the groups ‘Green Factory’ concept. 1800 saplings have been planted inside the Industrial site till date. Also Michelin has pledged that the plant will not draw any water from the industrial zone’s water tables. Instead water will be taken from the Redhills reservoir, an artificial storage lake 20 kilometers from the site.
We understand the need to contribute to the Chennai’s green cover and more importantly the need to spread this awareness to other citizens. Only then, the collective consciousness can grow and along with it, Chennai’s natural umbrella against the tropical sun.
We have put simple things that you can do to add to the forest cover that can become a reality for the upcoming generation in Chennai. We welcome ideas and thoughts from you that can help this drive get stronger and look forward to seeing your emails at email@example.com.