In an exploding city with an ever increasing population, , where construction is a major activity, vehicles have right of passage, sidewalks have no space for walkers and garbage rules road space, it’s a miracle there are green areas that allow one to breathe some fresh air. They are real, outdoor, semi-wildernesses, within city limits. Know them? Here is a guide to a Chennai eco-spot-hopping.
At Adyar Poonga, Preston Ahimaz of Pichandikulam Forest Consultants (then), offers a lec-dem on “eco-spot”. “It’s where the ecology of the land is allowed to function, relatively undisturbed,” he says. Animals and plants complement one another, balancing the local ecology. When you remove what is there and bring in what is not , the system collapses. “ Leave things alone, protect the green areas and promote them where feasible. Nature is resilient and dynamic; it balances itself,” he adds.
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Joss Brooks, who through his brand of restoration ecology, has given a city dump an unimaginable makeover. Geeta Padmanabhan on the making of the Adyar Poonga.
Joss Brooks is a man difficult to catch up with. It was raining, but he walks up and down the restored mounds and the new “cottages” of Adyar Poonga, explaining the toil behind the transformation. I want the sun shining — on his past. “The story is about you,” I tell him. . He agrees. Reluctantly.