We are here to share the immense impact of a ten days Swachh Urja Yatra (Clean Energy Drive) done under 100 %UP Campaign by The Climate Agenda and Purpose Climate Lab. It was a public outreach drive which was planned to reach out to people living in urban and rural areas of the state. The drive was constituted with three electric rickshaws, e rickshaw union members from Varanasi and Climate Agenda activists.
Swachh Urja Yatra (Clean Energy Drive): Objective and the chosen route for travel:-
The 100% Uttar Pradesh campaign is pushing for a cleaner, safer future for UP’s 166 million residents, powered by 100% renewable energy. As Prime Minister Modi has pointed out, clean streets in a Swacch Bharat must also include Swacch Havva. E-rickshaws are quiet, clean and powered by home-grown renewable energy.
India is leading the world in its ambitious commitment to shift to 100% electric vehicles powered by 100% renewable energy, for both private and public transport. This vision ensures that all transport will be zero emissions and reduce India’s dependence on costly and insecure foreign fossil fuel imports.
Varanasi is PM Modi’s constituency. He is showing amazing leadership and setting ambitious targets for renewable energy in India. The Climate Agenda is working with 100% UP campaign to ensure that these solutions are put in place as efficiently and quickly as possible so we can solve UP’s air pollution crisis and prevent dangerous climate change.
To design e rickshaws with relevant messages on it, the 100% UP had partnered with three young designers and the acclaimed Taxi Fabric project to create 15 specially customized electric rickshaws. The interiors of the rickshaws feature beautiful original designs highlighting the potential in clean energy such as solar to help create a cleaner, greener Varanasi free of air pollution.
These customized ‘travelling museums’ were unveiled in Varanasi on 1st November 2017 in presence of over 1000 people who joined us for a road show and several dignitaries from diverse walks of life. The collaboration between 100 % UP campaign and Design Fabric is a unique example of a collaboration between the art and the activism. The results yielded with such collaboration have been amazing so far and it will sure help many other campaigns in the region to think beyond traditional methods of working.
The SUY travelled for a length of 500 kilometers to connect strategically and historically three most important cities of Uttar Pradesh i.e. Varanasi, Allahabad and Lucknow. There were more than 40 locations where Yatra halted for street plays and to motivate people to connect with the campaign. Picture below represents the map of the part of the state where the SUY travelled:
Some of the interesting figures which emerged out from the Yatra:
Political Mobilization around this activity:
The Campaign team reached out to 2 senior cabinet ministers in Yogi Government including MoEF, Uttar Pradesh, Hon’able Dara Singh Chauhan and they promised all possible support to the campaign. The Yatra was inaugurated with statements coming out from 3 senior members of Legislative Assembly of Uttar Pradesh, representing Varanasi and nearby areas. The Yatra did enjoy a good rapport with political representatives of the constituencies en route, but due to the Model Code of Conduct during Municipal Body elections, the Yatra team refrained from inviting them into the activities.
Despite a very low understanding of the issue, we see an immense opportunity within the political circles. MLAs from almost political parties are speaking very positively but we do admit that it is not the right time to judge their intention.
The Climate Agenda sees it as a good start of the campaign around measures to control air pollution. There are many more events and activities planned in the upcoming weeks and the kind of overwhelming response that we have received in this Yatra have filled us with much enthusiasm. We will keep updating all of you.
Thank you so much for taking out time to read this. Some of the photographs attached here to see the massive support which the Yatra team garnered from all places.
Media responded too well. Here are some of the news paper clippings published in Varanasi, Lucknow and other districts!
Keep visiting here for more updates!
Climate Agenda Team.