Punjab Cricket Association to become country's first carbon-neutral body

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Mohali, Dec 15(ANI): In the backdrop of the Copenhagen climate change summit, Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) is holding talks with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) to reduce its carbon footprint.

The Association is aiming to become the first carbon-neutral cricket association in the country by taking measures to cut back on its carbon emission at its stadium in Mohali.

"We are taking a lead. I had the privilege of visiting their (UNEP) office last month, during my visit to Kenya, and I was so impressed by the work which is being done by their organization, and commitment and dedication that they have. We thought we will request them to provide us with the know-how of going carbon-neutral," said I. S. Bindra, President of PCA.

The Association is hopeful of making an early success of its aim by appointing those selfsame experts, who also advised mega sports events like FIFA World Cup on reduction in carbon emission.

PCA is also planning to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with UNEP regarding the same matter in March next year, when the third season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) would be played on its grounds.

"PCA has taken the lead to be environment-friendly and make the entire structure of cricket in Punjab green. It is not only this stadium (Mohali stadium) that we are talking about, we are talking about the upcoming stadiums in Bhatinda, existing stadiums in Patiala, Jalandhar and Amritsar and other facilities that we are setting up through the school network in Punjab," said Vishwajeet Khanna, Vice-President of the PCA.

UNEP is also very excited on the prospect of starting people on the carbon-neutral path in India.

"The main reason basically is because sports is just that much popular in all over the world and cricket is one of the most popular sports in the world. So reason is, sports are very important, in order to show the people what is possible, how can you reduce the energy demand. So, it's all about a question how can you give an example, not only for sports, but for the world in general. Therefore, cricket - as I mentioned - is very important for us," said Hartmut Stahl, Programme Officer of Sport and the Environment Unit, UNEP. (ANI)

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