PM Narendra Modi launches Global initiative ‘Lifestyle for Environment (LiFE) Movement; Calls for human centric and collective efforts that further sustainable development

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that the challenges of planet earth are well-known to all and the need of the hour is human-centric, collective efforts and robust action that further sustainable development.

Launching a global initiative Lifestyle for the Environment (LiFE) Movement, on the occasion of World Environment Day today through video conferencing, Mr Modi said, the vision of LiFE is to live a lifestyle that is in tune with our planet and does not harm it and those who live such a lifestyle are called Pro-Planet People. He said, Mission LiFE borrows from the past, operates in the present and focuses on the future.

The launch initiated ‘LiFE Global Call for Papers’ inviting ideas and suggestions from academics, universities and research institutions etc to influence and persuade individuals, communities and organisations across the world to adopt an environment-conscious lifestyle.

The idea of LiFE was introduced by the Prime Minister during the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference of the Parties COP-26 in Glasgow last year. The idea promotes an environment conscious lifestyle that focuses on mindful and deliberate utilisation instead of mindless and destructive consumption.

Union Minister for Environment, Forest and Climate Change Bhupender Yadav, NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant were present on the occasion. The programme also witnessed participation of Co-Chairman Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Bill Gates, Climate Economist Lord Nicholas Stern, Author of Nudge Theory Prof. Cass Sunstein, CEO and President World Resources Institute Aniruddha Dasgupta, UNEP Global Head Ms. Inger Andersen, UNDP Global Head Achim Steiner, World Bank President David Malpass among others.

Mr Bill Gates said that he was inspired by India’s leadership and efforts to curb rising emissions. He said, he is excited to learn about the LiFE movement and its potential to draw in the full power of collective action. Mr Gates said, to eliminate greenhouse gases we need innovative technologies and participation from all.

Ensuring that these innovative technologies are widely adopted will not only require large investments and partnerships between private and public sectors but also demands from individuals. Individual actions will send market signals that will encourage governments and businesses to invest in these innovations and create the breakthroughs we need.

Mr Gates said congratulated Prime Minister Modi for taking a lead on this global initiative of citizen action to promote pro-climate behaviours. He said, together we can build a green industrial revolution. He said, the necessity for collective global action to address climate change has never been greater and India’s role and leadership are crucial in ensuring that we reach our climate goals.

Prof. Cass Sunstein said that India and Prime Minister Modi have been the world leaders with respect to environmental protection and climate change and human behaviour and ‘many of us are looking at India for inspiration and ideas. The Professor spoke about the EAST framework of behaviour change. EAST stands for Easy, Attractive, Social and Timely. He added a new letter ‘F’ to the framework to make it FEAST. F is for Fun and he said that pro-environment activities are often fun and India has shown this in recent times.

Ms Inger Andersen also spoke on the occasion and welcomed the launch of LiFE by the Prime Minister. She said, with more than 1 billion people and home to a thriving generation of innovation and entrepreneurship, India is central to global environmental action.

Mr Achim Steiner said that countries like India are serving as kinetic energy behind the decisive climate action on the world stage. That includes its work through cutting-edge initiatives like International Solar Alliance and Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure and One Sun One World One Grid.

Mr Aniruddha Dasgupta thanked the Prime Minister for a much-needed global movement and conversation on how we live, how we consume and how we take care of the planet.

Lord Nicholas Stern recalled Prime Minister’s landmark speech at CoP 26 at Glasgow to set out an inspiring vision of a new path of development. He said, it would be the development and growth story of the 21st century both in raising the living standards of the communities and saving the future of our future generations.

Mr David Malpass recalled the words of Indian scriptures on the centrality of the environment in the Indian ethos. He remembered seeing this urgency while working with the Prime Minister on Civil Service capacity building in Gujarat in 2019. He also praised India’s local initiatives like POSHAN, ASHA, and Swachh Bharat people helping in financial inclusion and localising the initiative.