Aaditya Thackeray speaks at Glasgow as Maharashtra bags award at COP26

In his speech, Thackeray expressed his gratitude on behalf of the state for the honour
Last Updated : 08 November 2021, 10:04 IST
Last Updated : 08 November 2021, 10:04 IST

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Maharashtra, on Sunday, received the Inspiring Regional Leadership Award from Under2 Coalition for Climate Action, becoming the only Indian state to win one of the three awards by U2, in Scotland.

Speaking in Glasgow on behalf of the award, Aaditya Thackeray, Maharashtra's Environment Minister said, "This state wants to lead the way in India to tackle climate change. The Chief Minister (Uddhav Thackeray) is a passionate wildlife enthusiast and conservationist, and he has given us the opportunity to dream of a better future, a greener future. We have started with a movement called Majhi Vasundhara, which means My Planet. We are focussing on the traditional five elements of nature."

He spoke about the need to put in collective efforts and meaningful actions to work on the global issues that don't see any border, race, nationality or gender. He also mentioned that the state government had been looking at clean energy and planned to move away from a conventional energy source such as thermal or coal energy

"Just recently we've solarised a highway and we will be generating 250 MW of energy. We have put out the tender document and we will be generating 250MW solar energy from the new highway between Mumbai and Nagpur," he added.

Under Thackeray, the state's youngest Cabinet Minister, the government has issued 9,800 hectares of mangroves as protected areas and launched the first statewide programme in the country on climate change mitigation and adaptation.

Maharashtra had sent entries for all three categories of the Under2 Coalition, including Inspiring Regional Leadership, Creative Climate Solutions, and Climate Partnerships. While Maharashtra was presented the award for the Inspiring Regional Leadership by the largest global network of states and regions committed to climate action, the other two awards were bagged by British Columbia (Canada) for Creative Climate Solutions and Quebec (Canada) for Climate Partnerships.

In his speech, Thackeray expressed his gratitude on behalf of the state for the honour. "My name Aaditya also means the sun and in India, we have been worshipping the sun god as the seed of the universe. In most of our ancient texts, the sun god holds a primary position," he added.

Maharashtra's entry showed how the state has progressed in forming a culture of climate action which saw an expense of $2 billion in climate-related disasters in the previous year.

To address climate change on a global scale, Maharashtra has joined the C40 Cities Initiative and the UN Race to Zero Initiative.

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Published 08 November 2021, 06:48 IST

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