Bengaluru was known as the “Garden city” because of its greenery, lakes and mild climate. Successive rulers of Bengaluru, from Kempe Gowda, to the Wodeyars have contributed to increasing greenery, thus making it one of the most livable cities in the world!
Today, Bengaluru is facing rapidly deteriorating environmental conditions-
# increasing heat levels even during non-summer months
# high air pollution
# less rainfall and depleting underground water table!
Various scientific studies along with those specifically done on Bengaluru shows that trees are important!
# Dr Ramachandra, from Indian Institute of Science (IISC) has stated that the city has lost 88 percent of vegetation and 79 percent of water bodies, and will be unlivable by 2020. The only solution he offers is planting of diverse vegetation in and around Bengaluru!
# On an average, a tree produces 117.934 kilograms of oxygen per year. Two mature trees can provide enough oxygen for a family of four.
# Trees absorb noise, dust and carcinogenic agents, thus reducing air pollution and improving health.
# Having trees on the road around a building can reduce AC and cooling costs by as much as 30 percent, as a study by Environmental Support Group showed! Bangalore Mirror’s test drive shows a variance of over 5°C in streets with and without green cover!
# Trees also affect precipitation of rain; the more the tree cover, the better the rains!
Therefore it is important and urgent that the BBMP ensure citizen participation and setup the necessary framework to ensure Bengaluru returns to its former glory as the Garden City of India.