The Coimbatore Corporation is contemplating making it mandatory for builders to plant trees at construction sites. The civic body will forward the suggestion to the Council, get its approval and then go ahead to implement the same, Mayor S.M. Velusamy told The Hindu .

This initiative comes close on the heels of Mr. Velusamy returning from Singapore after attending a climate change conference, organised by the Cities Development Initiative for Asia.

The effort was part of a series of measures aimed at increasing the green cover, reducing carbon dioxide emission and addressing issues regarding climate change.

As part of the carbon dioxide reduction exercises, the Corporation would, in a phased manner, replace conventional streetlights with energy efficient, CFL or LED lamps. It would also go in for solar-powered streetlights.

Mr. Velusamy said that under the Solar City project, the Corporation would also solar power a government office, a private small or medium-sized industry, and encourage use of solar water heaters and lighting in buildings.

This way, the dependence on conventional energy would come down. He said the State Government would complement the Corporation’s efforts and pointed out that the Chief Minister had launched the ‘Green Houses’ project for the poor.

Yet another of the Corporation’s efforts in reducing dependence on conventional energy is to take people off city’s roads and encourage them to use mass transport system. In this regard, the Corporation had passed a resolution seeking a mono rail project for Coimbatore, he pointed out.

Mr. Velusamy also spoke about plans to tap methane from waste dumped at the Vellalore yard. This was in a very preliminary stage but the Corporation was keen on having such a project.

The Corporation had already partnered with ICLEI, an NGO, to introduce measures to improve efficiency of motors in water supply network and was in the process of reducing streetlight consumption.

To keep up the momentum, the Corporation might host a conference on climate change with support from the State Government. Mr. Velusamy said that he would take it up with the Chief Minister, get approval and then proceed further.

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