Goodyear India partnered with Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), to support farmers in Barnala, Punjab, to mitigate crop residue burning, a significant aggravator of air pollution. This initiative, as a part of Goodyear India’s annual CSR initiative, aims at making tools accessible and upskilling farmers to adopt climate-friendly and cleaner agriculture practices.
Under this initiative, Goodyear India has donated farm equipment and with CII’s support will mobilize villagers via volunteers to conduct behavioral change campaigns. These campaigns will aim to improve awareness through activities including wall painting, creating farmer user-groups as well as providing technical guidance to farmers to reduce stubble burning.
The inauguration ceremony of the initiative was held at Bhaini Mehraj village in Barnala along with the support of the District Administration of Barnala. The initiative was launched in the presence of Ms Lovejeet Kalsi, ADC, Barnala, Dr Rajesh Kumar Raheja, Cane Commissioner, Punjab, Dr Varinder Kumar, Chief Agriculture Officer, Barnala, Mr. Anuj Thakkar – VP Farm & Commercial, Goodyear India, Ms Seema Arora, CEO of CII Foundation along with scientists from Punjab Agricultural University (PAU), the farmers in Barnala and other eminent dignitaries.
Commenting on this occasion, Mr. Sandeep Mahajan – Chairman and Managing Director, Goodyear India Ltd. said “We are proud to support this initiative which encourages farmers in adopting viable environment-friendly alternatives to stubble burning. With this initiative we are doing our bit and finding solutions to reduce the air pollution which is caused in Northern states due to stubble burning. Our contribution to the villages in Barnala is in continuation to our commitment to health and wellbeing of our environment and the members of the communities we operate in. The equipment and training provided will help create a psychological change in dealing with stubble”.
Ms Seema Arora, CEO of CII Foundation said, “Considering the complexity and magnitude of the stubble burning issue, CII’s effort has been to develop industry partnerships to handhold farmers to adopt climate-friendly and cleaner agriculture practices. Working on this initiative in last four years, CII has adopted 300 villages in Punjab and Haryana. I am happy in partnership with Goodyear India we have initiated work in Barnala. We look forward to strengthen this partnership in future and support the District Administration in the efforts to solve stubble burning in the area.”
CII and Goodyear are supporting farmers in 15 villages in Barnala covering 40,000 acres of farmland through a range of interventions such as training, providing machinery and technical support to farmers, and facilitating the adoption of viable environment-friendly alternatives to stubble burning. Farmers welcomed this noble initiative wholeheartedly and have vowed to collectively work to solve stubble burning problem in the villages.