Delhi- Meerut Express Highway will be inaugurated in the coming months which will help to reduce the travel time significantly between the two cities

No. PR- 282 March 24, 2021 New Delhi Delhi- Meerut Express Highway will be inaugurated in the coming months which will help to reduce the travel time significantly between the two cities Focus on Green Infrastructure is important. Ethics, economy, ecology, and environment are the important pillars of Indian society. The large scale of environmental degradation and climate change combined with the loss of natural resources and increasing construction has contributed to the growing need for green highways in the country. Infrastructure will play a critical role in the course of adopting eco-friendly practice which will not only help in safeguarding the existing resources and will help them to make them more sustainable, opined Mr. Nitin Gadkari, Hon’ble Minister of Road Transport & Highways and the Minister of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, Govt. of India in the inaugural of Virtual National Roads & Highways Summit themed Focus on Green Infrastructure organized by PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry. Mr. Nitin Gadkari mentioned that while the economy has been the center of focus, we need to develop water, power, transport, and communication for the industry development and growth of capital investment, all leading to creating employment opportunities and eradicate poverty. He emphasized that if we want to make India a super economic power and build an Aatma Nirbhar economy, it’s time for the country to develop world-class infrastructure. Our Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi Ji has given us a task for developing an infrastructure of Rs 111 Lakh Crore in next 5 years with the green approach as ecology and environment are of utmost important. He deliberated that Green infrastructure in line with the triple bottom line framework of people, planet, and profits is the ecological structure needed for environmental, social and economic sustainability. In the current financial year, 2021 the Ministry of Road, Transport and Highway has constructed many national highways at the rate of 34 KM / Day and we are confident that by the end of March we will go up to 40 KM/Day. There is significant work being done for road connectivity with the help of the Golden Quadrilateral project; National Highways Development Programme; Bharatmala Pariyojana; Setu Bharatam program and Sagar Mala project. Mr. Gadkari shared that the government is developing green corridors, express highways, and access control highways. He discussed the various highways under construction like the Delhi- Meerut Express Highway will be inaugurated in the coming months which will help to reduce the travel time significantly. The construction of roads in Delhi will help to reduce air pollution in the city and we are trying to reduce the logistics cost at the same time reduce pollution. He informed us that we are in the process of completing Char Dham Pariyojana which will increase the tourism of Uttrakhand. He discussed the various green highways which are under construction which will help to reduce air pollution, traffic, and logistics cost. He also discussed the key features of green highways in the reduction of greenhouse gas emission, carbon footprint, and many more. The technological advancements and good practices are enabling the execution of most complex road projects in a timely and eco-friendly manner with lower project life cycle costs. Mr. Nitin Gadkari informed that the government of India and the World Bank recently has signed a project to build safe and green national highway corridors in the states of Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, and Andhra Pradesh. The project will enhance the capacity of highways in the mainstream, safety, and green technologies. The new and emerging technology includes the use of material for road construction such as recycled materials, plastic waste; use of project monitoring system for real-time; project tracking and monitoring, and electronic toll collection via fast tag. He shared that we are working on the reduction of cement and steel in road and bridge construction. We are adopting new technology by which we can avoid the use of cement and steel. We are committed to making good quality at the same time we need to reduce the cost. We have decided all plastic and rubber in the Bitumen and use coir and jute carpet in road construction which will help to support farmers and low-income people in the country. Mr. Nitin Gadkari mentioned that while there is a decrease in the income amidst the pandemic, but we are sure that there will be an increase in the income in the coming years. In addition to the usage of automation and machine control technology, we are working on using a GPS by which there will be no toll barriers between the highways. The ministry has taken notable initiatives to ensure the conservation of the natural eco-system. The use of solar power is being mandatory for all toll plazas and we have constructed a green highway mission where plantation has been carried out along the highways. We need to adopt transplantation technology to save the existing old trees. The ministry has issued a scheme for a self-sustainable bus port where rainwater harvesting, solid waste management, and solar system will be installed. He also mentioned that we are working on bringing an integrated road map and creating a poll for alternate green transport fuel like electricity, bio CNG, LNG, and many more. The Government is working on priority to have public transportation on electricity. He appealed to the developers, contractors to increase the use best sustainable technology which is qualitative, cost-effective, time bound, and ecofriendly. Mr. I K Pandey, Special Secretary and Director General (Road Development), Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, Govt of India shared the government initiatives towards the Green Infrastructure in terms of Roads & Highways, mentioned that we need to promote and use materials which help in cutting down carbon footprint and cut-on pressure on natural resources. We are bringing out guidelines to maximize the use of modified materials. The use of Bioproducts is an aspect we are promoting along with capacity enhancement which will enhance mobility, cut down fuel costs and accelerate the green environment. Another focus towards the Green infrastructure is Safety which is the most important activity that the ministry is emphasizing on. Mr. Sanjay Aggarwal, President, PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry in his presidential address appreciated the reforms placed in the Union Budget 2021 for the development of Roads and Highways infrastructure which will lead to a reduction in trade and transaction costs and enhancement of GDP growth of Indian Economy. Mr. Aggarwal mentioned that the development of Green Infrastructure and the use of green technologies in roads and highways development will enhance transportation functionally and ecological sustainability, helping it to cater to transportation requirements and environmental concerns can be addressed at the planning and conceptualization stage itself. He discussed the expected contribution from the creation of green technologies which will serve as a major step towards our commitment to the future generation. For highway projects to be environmentally sustainable there is a need for biodiversity lost in the process of construction to be restored through tree plantation of native species of flora and unhindered passage, movement, and preservation of natural habitats, reduce Human-Animal Conflict to prevent further degradation of forest cover. PHD Chamber’s Virtual National Roads & Highways Summit – Focus on Green Infrastructure, will be deliberated and look forward to sustainable suggestions for the Roads and Highways Sector for transformative growth in the coming years, said Mr. Sanjay Aggarwal. Mr. Pradeep Multani, Senior Vice President, PHD Chamber applauded the diligent efforts of Shri Nitin Gadkari Ji, Hon’ble Minister for Road Transport and Highways for achieving the record construction of 34 KM / Day in the current financial year. This achievement is significant due to the disruption caused due to the pandemic leading to affecting the construction activities during the period. He discussed the recent measures taken by the government which has helped in reducing the cash conversion cycle favoring the contractors leading to an increase in construction pace. Roads and highways are one of the most significant parts of any country’s infrastructure sector and are also used as an indicator to validate any country’s economic prosperity. Indian roads and highways market grew at a significant pace over the past few years, owing to increasing focus of Government of India towards better infrastructure of roads and highways network for public and freight transportation, said Mr. Pradeep Multani. Mr. Sudhir Hoshing, Chair, Infrastructure Development Committee, PHD Chamber in his industry perspective shared that Green Infrastructure needs the engagement of local communities for success and there is a need to make sure that while planning and designing the green highway projects, we focus on maintaining sync with the biodiversity to help regenerate natural habitation. Mr. Ashish Wig, Mentor, Infrastructure Development Committee, PHD Chamber while proposing the vote of thanks to all the delegates and participants, mentioned with the growing awareness about climate change, transportation professionals need to integrate green concepts into the transportation planning, design, construction, and operation processes. The recent green initiatives by the Govt. for national highways will help to preserve the green cover at the same time help in the utilization of reusable material while laying roads. The summit was moderated by Dr. Ranjeet Mehta, Deputy Secretary General, PHD Chamber, and was attended by Mr. Saurabh Sanyal, Secretary General, PHD Chamber along with many industry stalwarts pan-India. The summit has been supported by National Highways Builders Federation (NHBF); Construction Equipment Rental Association (CERA); CDS Infra Projects Ltd.; Trimble India; Vaaan Infra and Verma Industries. Ends Media Division PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry