Mahatma Gandhi said “The Nature has enough for man’s need not for man’s greed”
Decades of deforestation, high pollution and global warming have posed several threats to the earth. The 22nd of April is observed as Earth Day by the United Nations to bring to light the need to conserve the earth, stop the felling of trees, raise concerns on issues like global warming and run several drives and awareness campaigns that urge people to take the right steps in the right direction. The theme for this year is ‘Invest in your Planet.’
At a global level and at a national level, the International bodies and national organizations take several steps to conserve the earth for future generations. However, as individual citizens, we too can contribute.
Here are 5 ways in which you can contribute
- Stop Felling Trees, Start Planting
For a long time we have cut down acres of green cover for our needs, this has led to a massive reduction in the green cover across the planet. As individuals, we can ensure that we plant trees in our society and in the land around us. After all, the plantation is good for the earth and for our well being as well. As responsible citizens, we can even urge our neighbours, relatives and friends in the vicinity to plant trees. The best way to encourage them would be to lead by example.
- Climate Change + Food Change
It is time we reduce our Foodprint. Foodprint means the impact of food production, transportation, storage and consumption on the environment. This would include the negative effects of the process too, for example, food storage would mean refrigeration and it might increase the emission of CFCs in the air. Therefore by managing what we eat, we are benefiting the climate. We should all together ensure that the environment is the least affected in the process. However, this is subject to many realities like our geographical locations, availability of resources etc. At the moment, we can research food items that cause the least harm to the environment and match them with our choices. This will propagate the mantra of “ Diet change with climate change”
- Segregate Waste and Keep Public Areas Clean
The best way to segregate waste is by maintaining separate bins for dry and wet waste. The way we ensure that we can recycle what is required and the rest can be treated in sewage plants or the like. Hazardous waste can cause pollution that damages the air and water, which harms soil quantity and eventually our health too. Take out 2 minutes every day and segregate the waste. The best way to keep public areas clean is by not littering and following all basic steps. We should throw trash in the allotted trash cans or just keep it in our bags until we find one. Further, on the occasion of earth day, you can arrange a drive with a bunch of your friends/peers and clean the roads adjacent to your residence and raise awareness of the same.
- Measure Your Plastic Usage
Choose a day and see how much plastic you use. This would include the plastic covers you might use, cups, bottles, plates and several other articles that we use on a day to day basis. All of these articles are cheaply available in the market. However, it will take years for the planet to get rid of it. The pollution caused by plastic is a serious concern today. The best way to put an end to all the plastic articles you use today is to find replacements that are made of aluminium and steel. Normalize carrying glass and containers for take-aways from restaurants and replace your regular plastic water bottles with steel bottles that will easily last longer.
- Drives and Awareness Campaigns
Earth Day gives you an opportunity to arrange for drives and campaigns to raise awareness on burning issues that concern our planet. You can make suitable audiovisual material to persuade audiences to take the right steps. You could mention points like carpooling, usage of public transport, shifting to diesel or electric vehicles instead of petrol, afforestation etc. When we lead by example we instil these values in our younger generations. All offices and schools can conduct educational webinars, highlighting the steps we need to take. Educating people is vital and it will bring the change we seek.
Doing our bit can make a world of difference. By educating others and taking action we are making people around us aware and responsible. This is the best way to achieve all our goals to make our earth thrive in its former beauty.
Happy Earth Day!