DBS Bank India expands support for environmental sustainability initiatives

In recent years, the world has witnessed several natural disasters that have had a direct impact on agriculture, biodiversity, freshwater supply and human existence. Climate change has become an important focus area, requiring comprehensive programs that offer long-term solutions rather than isolated action points. DBS Bank India has recently collaborated with two NGOs working on different aspects of this issue.
The bank collaborated with the Raah Foundation to pilot a pioneering food forest project in rural Maharashtra. This project aims to establish a prototype of a long-term carbon sink through scientifically designed forestry composed of several seasonal fruit and vegetable plants. This approach can provide various benefits and provide long-term social, economic and environmental value.
Separately, the bank provided a grant to the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) to support its ongoing efforts to mitigate human-wildlife conflict in Mumbai’s Sanjay Gandhi National Park. The WCS initiative aims to engage local communities and conduct awareness and rescue training programs, reducing the risk of such conflicts and providing a safer habitat for leopards and other wildlife.
Speaking about these partnerships, Shoma Narayanan, Executive Director, Group Marketing and Strategic Communications, DBS Bank India, said, “We understand our role as a financial institution in promoting social, economic and environmental sustainability. These initiatives are crucial in the broader context of climate change and sustainable development. We are confident that our partnership with the Raah Foundation and the Wildlife Conservation Society will have a long-term environmental and social impact.
Sarika Kulkarni, Founder of Raah Foundation, said, “With the support of DBS Bank, we are creating a food forest which will have 200 species of trees/shrubs/grasses/tubers/climbers for the tribes living in Jawhar, District from Palgar. of Maharashtra. We have ambitious plans to create 1,000 acres of food forests in the coming years. We are sincerely grateful to DBS Bank for their immense support.
Studies have revealed that climate change poses a serious threat to the food security of vulnerable communities. Tiered food forests are a plant-based, sustainable, low-maintenance food production system that offers direct uses to humans. DBS Bank India’s contribution to the Raah Foundation will be used for the installation of a solar pump, drip irrigation, purchase of saplings, organic manure and geotagging of trees. In addition, the funds will also help conduct a baseline biodiversity assessment and a hydrogeological assessment.
Growing food forests will solve a variety of problems in terms of reducing vulnerability to the impact of climate change while maintaining essential ecosystem services such as air and water purification, pollination, nutrition, soil erosion control and carbon sequestration.
Dr Vidya Athreya, National Director of the Wildlife Conservation Society-India, said: “The Mumbai leopard survey project is extremely important in addressing the issue of human-leopard conflict. The generous support of DBS Bank has been crucial to the success of our work. We are extremely grateful and privileged that DBS has supported this project, and we look forward to future collaborations.
DBS Bank is committed to conducting its business more sustainably and managing its environmental footprint. The bank has undertaken several initiatives to support and address critical environmental, social and governance (ESG) challenges through strategic partnerships. The bank strongly believes in the need to change our approach to food production and consumption. With this mission, DBS Bank launched a Towards Zero Food Waste (TZFW) initiative in 2020. DBS is also advocating for scaling up transition financing and supporting like-minded customers and their ecosystem of supply chain partners. sourcing to adopt sustainable business practices.

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