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Haldwani Zoo : India’s 1st Carbon Neutral Zoo

I was never an animal lover; instead, I’d be scared when I came across them. But then life happened, and I went on to pursue Zoology for my higher studies. It was during this time that I fell in love with the diverse creations of God. Animals are the most innocent creatures in this world. They love you unconditionally and can never betray you. But as humans, we have failed miserably in our duty of conserving their habitats. However, recently, I stumbled upon the Haldwani zoo and decided to visit the place for its unique characteristics.

A few months back, my senior colleague told me about the first carbon-neutral zoo in India. She described to me how this zoo aims to provide a clean and healthy habitat to the animals. I was excited to hear about this and decided to finally pay a visit.

However, this zoo is still being developed, and I wasn’t sure about how to go there. Fortunately, I got a recommendation from my senior lecturer and went there to do my research study. So, I packed my bags and made my way to the first carbon-free zoo in India.

Haldwani Zoo is famous for its first natural environment devoid of any carbon residues, made so keeping in mind the needs of the animals residing there. This zoo is frequently called the “commercial hub of Uttarakhand.” This zoo aims to cut down the harmful effects of carbon and its compounds on the environment. As a zoologist, I was thrilled to see someone finally take up this case with such zeal. After visiting this place, I can proudly say that this zoo delivers all its promises with the utmost perfection.

Before I go into the details of this zoo, let me guide you about how to reach this place. I took a train ride from Howrah station to New Delhi and finally to the Moradabad junction. From there, I went to stay in a hotel which was near the zoo area.

You can also reach this place via flight or car. The nearest domestic airport is Pantnagar airport. Once you reach Nainital, you can take a car or cab ride to the destination. The zoo is located around 30km by road from the hill station. Regarding staying, you can get some good budget hotels in the close vicinity of the zoo.

Finally, after reaching the place, I made all my arrangements for my day trip to the zoo. The next day, I got all my essentials packed for the zoo trip and started on my journey. After I reached the place, I was taken aback by the environment of the zoo and the unique concept of it.

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What Is So Unique About The Haldwani Zoo?

Haldwani Zoo

A unique feature of this zoo is its clean and carbon-free environment. The zoo is the first to achieve and preserve such a concept in India. The “Carbon Neutral” zoo means there will be zero-emission of carbon and its compounds from the premises of the zoo.

But, Why Is Carbon Emission Harmful For Us?

Carbon and its derived compounds help to increase the rate of pollution in the environment. Carbon dioxide is the most harmful product of carbon emissions. Cars, buses, ships, etc. produces carbon dioxide gas which goes on to increase global warming. The burning of different fossil fuels and deforestation increases the amount of carbon dioxide in the environment. Our body also produces carbon dioxide as an excretory product in the environment. Due to these reasons, there is a sharp increase in the amount of carbon dioxide gas on earth.

Carbon dioxide gas is the most harmful greenhouse gas as it increases the heat absorbed by Earth. This heat is not released back and hence increases the temperature of the Earth’s surface. As a result of this, global warming is growing worse every day. Thus, the harmful effects of carbon emission are:

  1. Increases the temperature of the atmosphere thereby causing global warming
  2. Affects the condition of flora and fauna all over the world
  3. Increase in temperatures causes the melting of glaciers
  4. Increases the average sea level and causes acidification of the ocean water
  5. Causes water and air pollution
  6. Destroys the coral reef
  7. Increase in acid rain
  8. Several health disorders, like respiratory problems, cancers, etc.

Thus, the entire environment gets polluted by carbon deposits which have tremendous effects on our lives. It is high time for us to understand the causes and consequences of global warming. We all crib about the degradation of the environmental conditions, but are we doing something to save our planet? 

We all know the answer very well. But today, a group of people is trying their best to do something to help make the conditions better. So, it’s a significant achievement for this zoo to create a carbon-free zone for living organisms. 

Aims of the Zoo:

Haldwani Zoo

The Haldwani zoo is built on 400-acres land in the town of Haldwani located in Nainital district. This zoo claims to be the first carbon-neutral facility in India. That means the premises emit zero carbon compounds as they use natural resources like sunlight, wind, etc. to fulfill their energy needs. This facility has around 19 segments including a botanical garden, biodiversity park, etc.

The raw materials used for construction are wood and other plant products. This is done to cut down the emissions of carbon and other harmful substances in the environment. They also have plantations like Bamboo, which help in the absorption of carbon on a faster scale. Other materials used include green timber and eco-friendly substances to ensure the carbon neutrality in the atmosphere.

They have implemented natural ways to manage their waste disposal to keep the environment clean. Bio-toilets, wind turbine, solar hybrid energy, fully automated in-vessel organic waste composter are some systems adopted by this zoo.

The premises of the zoo have separate divisions for different types of animals- herbivores, carnivores, birds, etc. Their motive is to keep the animals in a natural environment rather than cages. This zoo also boasts of a safari that allows you to witness the majesty of its flora and fauna.

Attractions of the Zoo:

Haldwani Zoo

The Haldwani Zoo safari will become the natural habitat for a diverse range of plants, birds, leopards, reptiles, amphibians, etc. There will include a mammoth zoo on its premises. This area will have a veterinary hospital, a rescue unit for the wild animals, and a conservation breeding unit. The zoo will cater to the needs of the lower altitude animals who fail to survive in the high altitudes of Nainital.

Visitors can use the service of a monorail to get the thrilling adventures of a wildlife safari. The best attraction of this place is set to be its “Walking Aviary.” This portion is specially made for the visitors to walk past the housed birds without disturbing them. This would be the most refreshing and serene experience of visiting this zoo.

Few facts about this zoo are:

  • The central zoo authority has given the green light to this zoo.
  • This facility will have a walk-in aquarium, monorail, toy train services along with an eco cafeteria.
  • Crocodile Park, Butterfly Park, Primate Zone, African Safari, etc. will be available.
  • There will be a jogging park to accommodate the playful kids and their families.
  • Separate zones for American, Australian and European fauna.

This zoo has lots more than this to offer to both the animals and to humans. Many zoologists, botanists, and researchers can go there for their research purposes. This zoo makes for an enriched source of information about many types of extinct and endangered species.

It is the first step towards building a pollution-free habitat for its different animals and plants. Hence, this zoo will be instrumental in saving many endangered animals and plants by cutting out pollution from that area.

What Is The Best Time To Visit This Zoo?

Haldwani Zoo

The temperatures range from 20°C-37°C in summer and 7°C- 23°C in winter. So, the best time to visit this place would be from September to March.

Things to Do:

This zoo and its surrounding places offer a lot of opportunities for its visitors to study Mother Nature. Teachers can organize small day trips and tours for their students to urge them to know more about ecology. Other activities would include a picnic, bird-watching, photography, etc.

One Thing I Loved About This Zoo:

What I loved the most about this zoo is its motto of bringing a change in the environmental conditions. Global warming and pollution are the results of our activities. Thereby, we are destroying our habitat, our planet Earth. The creators of this zoo hope to motivate people to take care of their habitat on a large scale. We don’t need to make significant changes in our lifestyles to keep our surroundings clean. A small change in our perspective can do wonders for conserving nature.

Haldwani zoo is being made with the sole objective of providing a pollution-free environment for the animals and other plants. This zoo will hold a special place in history for delivering a carbon-neutral area in today’s world. This will surely motivate others to consider the fact that we all can do something to save our environment.

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