Naseem Bagh Srinagar

Sharad – Digest for Oct 2021

शरद (Hindi, sharad; Autumn)


When there’s a nip in the air, when there’s a cold breeze blowing, when some of the birds begin to leave, when the trees switch to a riotous wardrobe and when the leaves desert the branches to kiss the ground… can you resist the seduction of autumn?

India is mostly tropical but we are blessed to have landscapes that this season fills with inescapable magic, if only to signal that it’s time to pause, to conserve and to replenish.

We inadvertently synched-up with nature’s clock this October, slowing down and taking stock. We had conversations about the practise and goals of conservation, how the national mission on biodiversity and human well-being is shaping up and how VC funders would like to make sense of the climate action landscape. We engaged with individuals doggedly trying to address challenges such as illegal sand mining and gaps in the organic cotton ecosystem. We learnt about springsheds, how water scarcity is altering Dehradun and how Goonj weaves in circularity into the re-use and re-purposing of clothes and materials. And as the uproar over Sri Lanka’s shift to organic gathered steam, there were counterviews to the narrative. Read this twitter thread by Zerodha founder Nithin Kamath on Rainmatter’s investments and position on organic agriculture.

Our circle of partners now includes Buzz WomenPunarchithSauramandala and Zodhya.

From the community has launched, in the last six months, five new programs, including one on EVs. They also held two job fairs, which had participation from 1,300 software professionals and 35 climate technology companies.

Nature Conservation Foundation (NCF) marked its 25th year with a series of talks on subjects ranging from the gangetic dolphin to the threats that imperil the Lakshadweep islands. The Partners Principles training programme, for which NCFs High Altitude team is a collaborator, was recognised as among the 20 outstanding global conservation practices at the 15th meeting of the Conference of Parties (CoP) to the Convention on Biological Diversity, held in Kunming, China in October.

Dry Fish - Dakshin

Photo: Ishaan Khot & Abhilasha Sharma/Dakshin

Dakshin’s team conducted a scoping study on dried fish, fish meal sectors and their value chains in Mumbai in October, visiting major landing centres and koliwadas (fisher colonies), and speaking with fisheries experts.


📌 We have partnered with Blue Sky Analytics to help make satellite data more accessible for non-profits to use. As part of this initiative, a non-profit can get one year of free access to Blue Sky’s APIs covering datasets such as historical, high-resolution Air Quality measurements as well as real time GHG estimates from fires. If this is valuable to your non-profit, check out Blue Sky Analytics’ offerings and read about how Parisar is leveraging this program for air quality advocacy in Pune. Mail: [email protected]

📌 The Tech4Dev community is scheduled to meet for a tech sprint in Tehri, Uttarakhand from November 14-20. Our tech genie Akshay Kanthi will be in Tehri. Tell us if you have ideas on what and how tech can potentially ease your efforts: [email protected]

📌 The Center for Wildlife Studies is crowd-sourcing funds for several projects, including for elephant acoustics and elephant research. Do consider contributing and spread the word (and get good karma points).

📌 ATREE’s Centre For Social & Environmental Innovation will raise the curtain on  an open-source tool to make water balance estimation easy. The tool, called Jaltol, will be launched on November 30. RSVP here.

📌 It’s raining jobs: There are open positions at JanaagrahaNCF (deadline 15 November) and Waste Warriors (rolling). Plus CWS is looking for a geospatial analyst; SayTrees wants an outreach and communications manager as does the Bangalore Life Sciences Cluster. Do refer and spread the word in your circles (Bonus karma points).

📌 The Third Pole travelled across Bangladesh’s river basins to record stories of hardship and displacement of local communities, told through music.

Stat of the month

1 million

Number of daily bike journeys in Paris. The city plans to have 180km permanent segregated bike lanes in the next five years to 2026. On a related note, the Dutch have a Van Gogh/Starry night-inspired bicycling path in the town of Nuenen!

Parting shot

There’s much at stake in Glasgow. We are all in this together, and perhaps what we can all do more of is emulate Rahibai Popere, who shares heirloom seeds, as well as seek more space for emissions-free transport.

Until next time, may your roads be auspicious

śubhāste panthānaḥ santu

Team Rainmatter Foundation

This entry was posted in Digest, Featured, General on by .

About Marisha

Resident listener at the Rainmatter Foundation. A large part of her role is to listen... not just to the people and entities Rainmatter engages with, but also to the message that the planet has been sending: we have to be sustainable, not extractive.

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