The Issue That Matters

Man, the so called most intelligent and the most civilized animal on this planet, is busy making continued progress and developments ever since his birth on earth and has given so much to mankind by his inventions and discoveries. The developments in the field of science and technology have empowered the whole of mankind and given it the potential to drive the world. But here arises a question which needs to be pondered upon: What has man lost in his blind and hollow race to achieve all he has today? The answer is far more appalling than one can ever think or imagine.


Slowly and gradually, we all are experiencing the start of the end, the beginning of doomsday. Man is heading towards his own destruction.


Man has devastated nature in the name of development, has marred the natural beauty of earth and is still exploiting and destroying the natural resources blatantly, without any fear of the vengeance that nature is surely going to take one day. Trees are being cut at a very high rate leading to deforestation which can have devastating after effects. So much of carbon emissions are taking place, increasing the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. It has resulted in the climate changes leading to adverse alterations in temperature, precipitation and sea levels and posing a mega threat to the lives and the livelihoods of people everywhere around the globe. Man’s extended intrusion in nature’s territory is bringing about some irreversible changes in the form of global warming, earthquakes, floods, rising sea levels, population changes, extinction of so many species of flora and fauna, droughts and fire.


We have polluted the environment badly. Natural resources like, petroleum, coal, water are being wasted worldwide. This wastage is not only depleting the reserves of these non-renewable resources for our future usage but also posing a serious threat to our planet.


We don’t need to go too far to get the examples of man’s devastating nature, even in our capital city, New Delhi, the green belts are on a death row. So many trees have been chopped for the construction of the Games Village for the Common Wealth Games 2010.According to a law on environment protection in India, if anyone cuts a tree, he is supposed to plant 10 more to make up for that. But this never happens actually, and the defaulters get away just like that without even paying for the destruction they do to nature.


Man is continuously reiterating his dominance over nature. If it continues like this, the day is not far away when there will be no sign of trees and plants and therefore, no human being to brag about the materialistic progress he has made over the years.


Global warming has become one of the most frequently debated issues nowadays, and why not, after all it is having an impact on everyone. According to the recent studies if carbon emissions continue to increase at a rate of 3 % per year, then we would overshoot the threshold limit for climate change catastrophe in the next 20 years, in half the time that was projected earlier.


It is high time we wake up and stop being rhetoric. Recent studies make actions on climate change more urgent. There is a dire need to build climate awareness at the grass root level. There are so many simple ways we can adopt to abate some of the carbon emissions. What we eat, what we drive, how we build our home can have an effect on our immediate surrounding and on places as away as Antarctica. Most important of all, it has become the need of the hour to vow to plant as many trees as we can in our lifetime to do penance for the sins we have committed against nature.


We can go for recycled paper rather than freshly prepared one. It can save many trees from being cut. We can use fuel efficient cars and can opt for a carpool whenever we can, to save fuel from being wasted. Also there is an urgent need to ditch plastic. Though the government has taken certain steps towards this, but its use is still not completely abandoned. It is not about governmentt enforcing a law, its all about one’s inner will to stop using things that are a threat to our environment.


Water, one of the most important natural resources, needs to be conserved as well. Due to over heating of the earth and uneven rainfalls, the ground water table is being rapdly depleted. By harvesting rain water, taking shorter showers, not using clean and safe drinking water to wash or watering plants, we can surely contribute towards water conservation.


Also using compact fluorescent bulbs and not leaving the electronic devices on the standby mode, we can conserve a lot of energy.


These are some of the small and the easiest steps, all of us can follow.


Use of renewable resources like solar and wind energy, making coal clean before using it to fire power plants, or providing rural areas with smokeless stoves, it is time for action and not just commitment on paper. No single action by itself can save the planet. Now we need to fire from all sides.

Sucheta Sharma

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