Food and Energy: Green Solutions from Grassroots India

Title: Food and Energy: Green Solutions from Grassroots India Date: Tuesday, April 24th 2012, 7 pm onwards Location: Hackerman B 17, 3400 N Charles St, Baltimore, MD 21218 Contact: Association for India's Development, info@aidjhu.org Description: Talk by Dr. Ravi Kuchimanchi and Aravinda Pillalamarri on sustainable development of India. Get inspired by a talk by Ravi and Aravinda, whose extraordinary commitment to the sustainable development of poor and marginalized people in India led to 'Global contribution to India 2012' award to Association for India's Development. The famous movie 'Swades: We the people' is based on Bilgaon Micro-Hydro Project accomplished by Ravi and Aravinda http://www.aidindia.org/projects/illus/pedal.htm . Ravi Kuchimanchi founded Association for India's Development in 1991 at University of Maryland College Park as a PhD student in the Department of Physics with the vision "Problems in India are connected so must be the solutions". In 1998, after his postdoctoral work in theoretical particle physics at University of Virginia, Ravi with his wife Aravinda focused on development issues in India such as dams versus people and environment, rural electrification and integrated development. Ravi received UMD College Park International Alumnus award 2012 for his outstanding contribution in founding Association for India's Development. Passionately interested in pursuing appropriate technology to benefit the underprivileged, Ravi with his colleagues recently adapted the traditional hay-box for Indian villages. The "Easy Cooker" that is both made and sold in Indian villages, conserves about 50% energy, saves time and creates livelihoods for bamboo artisans and women's groups. It saves about 0.5 Kg in carbon dioxide emissions per use compared to electric rice cooker. With 600 million rice-eaters in India and billions around the world, and priced locally at Rs 70-100 in villages, it is not only a green technology but is affordable by hard-working rural people who earn $1-2 a day. Aravinda Pillalamarri has worked with people fighting for social justice in India since 1998. Raising awareness on fair trade and sustainable livelihoods, she works with tailors designing and marketing khadi (handspun) garments with a view to sustaining best practices of traditional living in modern times. In this context she also works in Srikakulam to promote programs that help people take control of their learning, food security, and health, such as village libraries, kitchen gardens, whole foods, and accountability in government services to mothers and children.
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