Surwahi Social Kanha – Coliving in wilderness

Sustainable Development Goals – India & Tourism

Introduction

Mud house in SSK

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), also known as the Global Goals, were adopted by all United Nations Member States in 2015 as a universal call to action to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure that all people enjoy peace and prosperity by 2030. The 17 SDGs are integrated—that is, they recognize that action in one area will affect outcomes in others, and that development must balance social, economic and environmental sustainability. Through the pledge, countries have committed to fast-track progress for those furthest behind first. That is why the SDGs are designed to bring the world to several life-changing ‘zeros’, including zero poverty, hunger, AIDS and discrimination against women and girls.

Global point of view

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) or Global Goals are a collection of 17 interlinked goals designed to be a “blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all”. The SDGs, set in 2015 by the United Nations General Assembly and intended to be achieved by the year 2030, are part of a UN Resolution called the “2030 Agenda”. To facilitate monitoring, a variety of tools exist to track and visualize progress towards the goals. The SDGs pay attention to multiple cross-cutting issues, like gender equity, education, and culture cut across all of the SDGs. The goals are to develop, improvise, modernise the economic, environmental, social realm on which the countries’ pillars stands by and with their flamboyant immaculate nature, enfranchisement the ecotourism, sustainable tourism, cultural tourism, wildlife tourism, rural tourism, community based tourism, sustainable development, conservation, conservation of natural resources in a magnanimity scale.

Indian point of view

From India’s point of view, Sustainable Development Goals need to bring together development and environment into a single set of targets. The fault line, as ever in global conferences, is the inappropriate balance between environment and development. We could also view the SDGs as an opportunity for revisiting and fine-tuning the indigenous plans and agenda on the framework to bring the country into the list of foremost developed countries and sustainably regaining focus on developmental issues.

Sustainable tourism

The tourism that takes full account of its current and future social, economic and environmental impacts, addressing the needs of visitors, the industry, the environment and host communities. Sustainable tourism involves the benefits of local economic development, ensures tourism development benefits both community and environment, meets both profitability and viability, becomes part of the local culture. To achieve sustainable tourism we need to make optimal use of environmental resources that constitute a key element in tourism developement, by maintaining ecological processes and by conserving natural heritage. Respect the socio-cultural authenticity of host communities, conserve their built and living cultural heritage and traditional values. SSK is the practical example of its kind which is elaborated below.

Sanduk Nala Stop Dam in SSK

Current example

Eco-friendly Coliving Place

Yoga Well in SSK

This is where two visionaries, Ankit Rastogi and Pradeep Vijayan conceptualised a project in the wilderness of Kanha National Park to give the travellers the feel of nature in the lap of nature itself. The SDGs have been taken very seriously as the concept started taking shape in the form of Surwahi Social Kanha. To give a glimpse of the evolution, less than 2% of the land is used for construction, almost zero use of chemicals and cement has been ensured, the remaining land is for the flora and fauna with whom we are supposed to share our mother earth. Conservation of energy in the form of rainwater harvesting, electricity free geyser, a solar water pump and construction of a dam has taken place. Inclusivity and accessibility have been greatly ensured by creating a place that’s customised for the differently abled people and creating a co-living space.

Wood fired water heater in SSK

Solar Energy Power Plant in SSK

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