NDTV, in association with Toyota, announces Green Awards

NDTV, in association with Toyota, on Monday announced Green Awards to encourage, acknowledge and award the champions of the earth, who contributed most towards protecting the environment.

The awards were instituted to recognise those working towards the green cause in urban, corporate, domestic and educational institutions and residents' welfare associations. The contenders will be judged by an eminent jury. The awardees will be given a cash prize of Rs.1,00,000, a certificate and a green trophy.

Climate change is both a global and domestic issue and it required a joint concerted effort on everyone's part, Minister of State (Independent charge) for Environment and Forests Jairam Ramesh said.

“This includes government, private industries, civil society groups as well as individuals. We need to significantly improve the country's natural forest cover, establish an effective environmental grievance tribunal and chalk out a climate change agenda for sustainable and long-term growth. It is important to remind our citizens of the overreaching importance to utilise our resources judiciously.”

He said the awards must recognise unknown individuals, who worked selflessly in remote corners of the country towards environment sustainability. Women in Uttarakhand were working for protecting the environment and there were people working day in and day out to save the planet.

“We need to salute such green warriors… Environment is such an issue that it is in our national agenda. In fact, it is also in the political agenda, as a number of youngsters are becoming a part of the campaign. We need clean air to inhale and drink pure water. We need support of celebrities. I have just convinced Priyanka Chopra to become a part of our public campaign for tiger conservation and cleaning the Ganga.”

Ms. Chopra said ever since she became a green ambassador, a number of netizens were actively following what she wrote and said.

“It feels great to be part of the campaign. For the past two years, Greenathon has been doing amazing things to protect our environment; it brought light to 150 villages. When we, as actors, get acknowledged with an award for our acting skills, then it motivates us to put our best foot forward. Similarly, when we would honour unsung heroes who are contributing in their own special way to make our plant environment-friendly it would encourage them to do more.”

She said the film fraternity in Mumbai had also become environment-conscious. Earlier, film crew used to litter the sets with plastic mugs and napkins but now they dumped it in a big bag that went for recycling.

“This is a cause that is close to my heart. My colleagues with whom I hang out also share my concern for doing our bit to save our planet from ecological degradation. As the green ambassador, I have learnt a lot and have incorporated some of its features at my home. The movement gives me a sense of power that we, as celebrities, can generate awareness in our family. As a multi-ethnic and multi-cultural country, it sometimes becomes difficult to motivate people to follow one direction. But we are striving to be successful.”

Ms. Chopra urged people not to be complacent about the issue. “People might think that our country is dirty in any case, if they throw one waste paper out on the street how does it matter? But even the smallest act contributes.”

The Energy and Resources Institute Director-General R.K. Pachauri said: “If [NDTV Chairman] Prannoy Roy permits me, then I would like to announce that we have registered for launching a green channel. Through Greenathon, we have provided light to our rural folks. We need to award not only those working in innovative technology, but also those bringing about lifestyle changes.”

Dr. Roy said the awards were open for entries from across the globe. They would recognise excellence in categories such as best green products, best green ambassador and best green State. Nominations would start from August and continue till September. The winners would be honoured with awards in November.