Chandigarh, August 20, 2023: The 5th edition of the India Clean Air Summit (ICAS), which will be held on August 23-25 in Bengaluru, will initiate dialogues on the implications of pollution on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Mission LiFE. The gathering also intends to align clean air goals with climate policies and discuss how democratising air pollution data can enable improved citizen science.
A unified roadmap for peace and prosperity for people and the planet, both now and in the future, is provided by the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which was endorsed by all United Nations Member States. The 17 SDGs, an urgent call to action for all nations, including India, are at its core.
Whereas, the Mission LiFE initiative of the Government of India aims to combine the efforts of individuals and communities to create a massive global movement for positive behavioural change towards environment conservation.
The 3-day summit is being organised by the Centre for Air Pollution Studies (CAPS) at the Center for Study of Science, Technology and Policy (CSTEP)—one of the leading policy-research think tanks in India. ICAS 2023 aims to prioritise clean air in the SDGs and in India’s policies for alleviating climate change.
“By converging these two crucial agendas, we aspire to foster an inclusive dialogue that transcends boundaries, ensuring that clean air becomes an intrinsic part of our nation’s development trajectory,” said Dr Jai Asundi, Executive Director, CSTEP.
Some of the participants in the latest edition of ICAS will be NITI Aayog Member Dr V K Saraswat, Member of Parliament Gaurav Gogoi; bureaucrats from Karnataka and Uttar Pradesh governments; WHO Director Dr Maria Neira; representatives from Central as well as State Pollution Control Boards; subject experts from multiple Indian Institutes of Technology, United Nations Environment Programme, Columbia University, and Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology; Prof. Debolina Kundu from National Institute of Urban Affairs; Centre for Policy Research Fellow Ms Shibani Ghosh; Council of Scientific & Industrial Research – National Environmental Engineering Research Institute’s (Delhi Zonal Centre) Chief Scientist Dr S K Goyal; and Dr Ravindra Khaiwal – Professor of Environment Health, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research.
ICAS 2023 will put the spotlight on air pollution’s effect on various SDGs, such as those related to good health and well-being, clean and affordable energy, sustainable cities, climate action, and protecting biodiversity, as well as on collaboration and partnerships for achieving the goals.
The panellists will interact to explore how clean air and SDGs are interconnected, identify the barriers to their achievement, the ways to overcome them for better public health, and interlinkages between urban and rural policies in India to achieve clean air objectives.
The gathering will also discuss how to bridge the gap in knowledge sharing, ways to foster collaborations between various stakeholders, successful case studies of integrating clean air with climate policies and challenges, incorporating clean air into climate action plans in the national policy framework, etc.
One of the most crucial areas that will be focused on during ICAS 2023 is the role of the public to improve air quality by democratising air quality research and empowering the citizenry.
The role of urban planners is critical in achieving the SDGs; hence, one of the sessions will explore the ways to design sustainable cities and communities without deviating from the goal of developing smart cities to meet clean air targets.
“Through ICAS, CSTEP is developing a platform to build and nurture an ecosystem that includes members of different communities – academia, civil society, industry, and government – to inform research with the ground realities and ensure policy solutions are successful,” said Dr Asundi.
“CSTEP strives to build an ecosystem of like-minded organisations/institutions to talk and work together for the sole vision of “clean air for all”’. ICAS 2023, which is CSTEP’s premier event, serves as a vital forum where academicians, emerging researchers, students, and policymakers converge to facilitate a culture of learning and knowledge exchange at the city/region/country level. ICAS has been growing year-on-year with the quality of discussions, presentations, speakers, and the number of participants. Moreover, ICAS provides an avenue for new technology innovators to join this ecosystem and make valuable contributions to the cause,” said Dr Pratima Singh, Senior Research Scientist, CSTEP.
ICAS 2023 is being co-hosted by the Indian Aerosol Science and Technology Association. CAPS is partnering with Swaniti and Parliamentarian Group of Clean Air (PGCA). ICAS 2023 is being supported by Clean Air Fund, Bloomberg, and Open Philanthropy along with City Air, Apollo Hospitals, Airveda, Aurassure, TSI, Envea, Awasthi, and Aeron Systems.