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NMCG Signs MoCP with MRCTI, USA at the ongoing COP28 in Dubai

The collaboration between NMCG and MRCTI exemplifies a commitment to global environmental sustainability, knowledge exchange, and innovative solutions for the protection and enhancement of river ecosystems.

Shivam Dwivedi
NMCG Signs MoCP with MRCTI, USA at the ongoing COP28 in Dubai (Photo Source:  Namami Gange/twitter)
NMCG Signs MoCP with MRCTI, USA at the ongoing COP28 in Dubai (Photo Source: Namami Gange/twitter)

The National Mission for Clean Ganga (NMCG), representing the River Cities Alliance (RCA), has signed a Memorandum of Common Purpose (MoCP) with the Mississippi River Cities and Towns Initiative (MRCTI). The signing ceremony, held at the Rotary Hall during the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP28) in Dubai, witnessed the collaboration between 124 cities/towns along the Mississippi River, USA, and the Indian River cities represented by NMCG.

The MoCP, signed by G. Asok Kumar, DG, NMCG, and Mayor Mitch Reynolds of La Crosse, Mayor Errick Simmons of Greenville, Mayor LaToya Cantrell of New Orleans, and Mr. Colin Wellemkamp (Executive Director, MRCTI), marks a crucial step toward the impending launch of the Global River Cities Alliance (GRCA). This development has expanded the RCA's strength, now boasting a membership of 267 global river-cities, including India, the USA, and Denmark. The GRCA is set to be officially launched on December 10, 2023, with expectations of more global river-cities joining the alliance.

The MoCP establishes a robust framework for collaboration between RCA and MRCTI, emphasizing integrated river management to tackle the impacts of climate change on ecosystems. The agreement focuses on capacity building, knowledge exchange, and joint initiatives, including a comprehensive water monitoring program and the sharing of best practices for sustainable urban development.

Key initiatives under this collaboration include restoring urban forests, lakes connected to rivers, and promoting green spaces. The emphasis on environmental flows and the recognition of floods' role in maintaining river ecosystem health highlight the commitment to proactive environmental stewardship and innovative solutions for sustainable river management.

Following the signing, Director General G. Asok Kumar held a bilateral meeting with Mayors, UNEP representatives, and officials from the United States Department of State. The discussions revolved around tangible avenues for ongoing collaboration, with a focus on knowledge exchange and enduring cooperation between NMCG, RCA, and MRCTI.

Director General G. Asok Kumar expressed keen interest in MRCTI's satellite-based water quality monitoring and citizen science initiatives to understand plastic pollution origins within river ecosystems. Meanwhile, Mayors from MRCTI sought insights into NMCG's Hybrid Annuity Model and the One-City-One-Operator model for sewage treatment plants.

Both parties explored the prospect of a city twinning program between RCA and MRCTI members, encouraging mutual learning and inspiration. Additionally, a proposal was made for a delegation of MRCTI Mayors to visit India in the upcoming year, aiming to strengthen institutional synergies and ensure the continuity of the collaborative partnership.

The initiation of the GRCA signals a significant milestone in the collective effort to address climate change and promote sustainable urban development worldwide.

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