Mumbai's ex-Mayor wants to turn your housing society green. Shubha Raul has written a letter to the Tree Authority and BMC suggesting that on the backdrop of space crunch and increasing pollution, all city buildings have terrace gardens. She has suggested that a portion of the mandatory refuge areas in buildings be converted into terrace gardens in order to counter air pollution.

Shubha Raul
Shubha Raul. File pic

The city’s pollution levels have come threateningly close to that of Delhi in the past few months. Mumbai has a considerable amount of vehicular pollution as well as presence of particulate matter in the air. The spate of sporadic fires at the Deonar dumping ground has contributed heavily to air pollution and people had taken to the streets to protest against it. This, coupled with loss of open spaces, trees, etc makes Mumbai’s air pollution a serious matter.

On this backdrop, Raul had written a letter to the Tree Authority dated February 8, 2016. It was discussed in Friday’s meeting. According to the letter, “Considering the city’s growing population, cutting of trees, increased pollution levels and rising number of highrises, it is necessary to implement the concept of terrace gardens. The concept needs to be implemented on the compulsory open space after every seventh floor in the building. This will not only increase greenery, but will also be friendly towards the life cycle of small birds, butterflies, bees etc. The terrace gardens can have aromatic as well as medicinal plants that give out a lot of oxygen. The BMC should take the help of experts in the matter.”

Thus, she has asked all existing and new buildings have such gardens. Besides, she has also included municipal buildings in the proposal. The tree authority on Friday ruled in favour of it.

“We all unanimously liked the proposal. It will not only improve the appearance of buildings, but will also contribute immensely to the environment. It will now be sent to the municipal commissioner for his remarks,” informed Abhijit Chavhan, another member of the authority.