What comes to your mind when you think of a city? Buildings touching the sky, fast moving traffic, well-maintained roads and an uninterrupted chain of facilities, all these facilities that are directed at improving the living condition of the urban population are together known as ‘infrastructure’. The government is continuously trying to improve the infrastructure of cities only to make our lives better.
However, in a quest to live a better and more comfortable life, one thing that is being damaged is our environment. Because of unplanned development and mismanaged construction, a whole lot of air and water pollution is being generated, simultaneously. To lessen the environmental effects of urban development, the government is trying to concentrate on a new concept called ‘Green Infrastructure’.
Green infrastructure focuses on the sustainable development of urban areas and involves environment-friendly methods of construction and development. It brings into view solutions that are energy-efficient. For example, energy is the most important requirement of any development; it is also needed to run the city. Green infrastructure would suggest the use of renewable sources of energy such as solar power.
Green infrastructure is not only aimed at saving the infrastructure but this also leads to a considerable reduction in development costs. In addition to the short term benefits, an eco-friendly development will also lead to general climate changes in the long term. Wind modification and a reduction in temperature are some visible changes.
An eco-friendly infrastructure comprises a larger number of gardens and parks, tree lined boulevards and water bodies that can be adjusted into the urban infrastructure. Smart Cities in India are based on the concept of green infrastructure. Use of renewable sources of energy, a planned way of waste disposal, better condition of roads, methods for conservation of resources- all are part of a smart city’s development.
Infrastructure, in its literal sense, should not only talk about roads, bridges and dams. It should be about the environment, people’s health and the condition of air and water in the urban cities. The authorities must also focus on the development of energy-efficient buildings, smart use of non-renewable energy and emphasize on the protection of environment in general. They should also try and educate people and make them aware of the innumerable benefits of green infrastructure.
Only when we work together with the government, the dream of smart cities and a Smart India can come true.
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