#ChampionsOfTheEarth: "Clean and green environment is NDA government's priority"
A clean and green environment is at the root of his government's policies, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in Delhi today as he was presented the UN's 'Champions of the Earth' award by United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.
Modi and French President Emmanuel Macron were jointly awarded the UN's highest environmental honor for their pioneering work in championing the International Solar Alliance.
Climate, calamity linked to culture: Modi
Climate and calamity are linked to culture, says Modi
In his address, Modi said climate and calamity are linked to culture, and it will be difficult to avoid calamity as long as concerns for the climate do not become a part of the culture.
From agriculture and industrial policies to building houses and construction of toilets, the need for a clean environment has been driving his government's programs, the PM emphasized.
India committed to bring down emission intensity by 20-25%: Modi
India's commitment to environment has only increased, Modi said, adding that his government is working to bring down "emission intensity" by 20-25% in the next two years and 30-35% by 2030.
"We have also pledged to get rid of single-use plastics by 2022," the 68-year-old said.
Modi said his government has succeeded in changing people's behavior accordingly, an apparent reference to 'Swachhta Abhiyan'.
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Respecting nature had always been part of Indian society: Modi
Citing ancient Hindu shlokas, the 14th PM of India asserted that respecting nature has always been part of Indian society.
The honor is a recognition of Indian tribes living in forests who respect trees more than their lives, the fishermen who capture only as much fish as they need to earn their living, and the women who have worshipped trees as gods, he added.
Trying to quicken economy growth rate to help poor: Modi
Indians have always treated nature as a living organism, the PM said. He noted that climate change affects the poor the most and added his government has been pursuing policies to quicken the rate of economy growth to give them a life of dignity.
Whole world committed to deal with climate change, says Modi
Detailing on the projects, Modi said, cutting edge technology and renewable energy are the basis of his government's "Smart City" project, while "per drop more crop", and organic farming are a priority in agriculture.
Modi said he had spoken about "climate justice" during the Paris Agreement, which was signed in 2016 to tackle climate change.
The whole world has committed to it, he added.