In Kottapalayam Sun Shines at Night!

Kottapalayam is an example of what could be duplicated in many Indian villages for many projects involving public good. A collaboration of an NGO, a private company and local and state governments made this happen. Murugamma had gone to Coimbatore and returned to Kottapalayam at night by the last bus. She walked home briskly.
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Women’s micro-enterprise initiative for sustainable rural lighting in India

The Centre for Appropriate Technology and Livelihood Skills (CATALIS) has undertaken a micro-enterprise initiative for providing sustainable lighting solutions for rural communities, through solar lighting devices. Involving rural women in these initiatives has proved to be an effective and sustainable means of ensuring the success of the programme. CATALIS initiated a ‘3 M’ approach viz. ‘Make, Market and Maintain’ to promote appropriate technologies in villages.
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A Green Label for Indian Tea

Two years ago Manogaran, the tea maker and supervisor of the Kaikatty Tea Industrial Cooperative Society, in the Nilgiri hills in South India was a worried man. Employed at the cooperative for over 30 years, he had known no other job and was worried about rumours that the cooperative would shut down amid rising losses. He was not alone in his worries – spread over 2,000 acres, the cooperative is a lifeline for its 1,500 members. More than 60 percent of the local economy in these parts relies on revenue from the sector which employs more than 3, 00,000 people.
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Drinking water security through rain water harvesting and ground water recharge

The village Hamirpur in block Datia of Datia district, Madhya Pradesh with a population of 641, majority of whom belong to scheduled castes and scheduled tribes, falls in Bundelkhand region and faces acute shortage of water and regular drought like situation due to erratic rainfall pattern. Overall rainy days have gone down, from 100 days (740 mm average) two decades ago to an average (340 mm) of 40 rain days today.
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Water in the land of extremes

More than seven million people rely on agriculture and animal husbandry in the Marwar region of the Western Indian state of Rajasthan, one of the worlds’ most densely populated deserts. Water is a scarce resource for the villages in the region, many of which do not have even a single source of safe drinking water within a 1.6 km radius of their homes. On average this region witnesses six drought years in a decade. It is no wonder that Marwar is known as the land of extremes – with low annual rainfall, non perennial rivers i.e. that flow only during certain times of the year, saline groundwater and extreme temperatures.
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Planning for sustainability: Women of Narayanpur show how

We were standing at the edge of the johad in Narayanpur, which was full of water. It was a hot day in the month of April, long after the monsoon season, when many small water harvesting structures become empty. But this johad was providing the residents of Narayanpur sweet water throughout the year. Narayanpur is a village in Rewari district in Haryana, where the groundwater is predominantly saline and not fit for drinking. Water quality tests conducted by the Agriculture Technology Management Agency, Rewari showed that only 24% of tube-well waters are of good quality and remaining water is affected with varying degrees of salinity and sodicity.
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Economic gains through ecological work

The impact of the watershed programmes have not only resulted in ecological restoration but also yielded economic returns for the communities. In village Bagroda of Bhopal district, the watershed mission initiated work in 2006, covering a total area of 1,275 hectares with a project cost of 65.03 lacs. In the four years of the project, a sum of 43 lacs have been spent in creation of 6 percolation tanks, 5 ponds, 10 boulder check dams, 6000 contour trenches, plantation of 57000 saplings and fodder development in 10 hectares.
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