Environment Conservation is the talk of the decade and it is only going to gain more and more attention day by day as it is a necessity of humankind. This is the only one discussion where everyone is on one side. We have to protect our environment, we know. As a community we have started working towards it. But have we started working on it as an individual? Because this would be so unfair if all the burden falls on handful of environmentalists.
We are born with some quality that make us what we are. We are born with ability to give and receive love, ability to trust others, ability to show gratitude towards others, ability to be kind and our own integrity which always help us decide between wrong and right. We show our love and compassion towards things that have lives, but we fail to demonstrate these values to the things that are not alive but are equally important for us to survive. But it is time to take our first step and shower our surrounding with love and compassion.
We all can contribute, and every single contribution will help. But the question is- Are we willing to contribute? This contribution will bring little discomfort in our lives. Are we ready for it? Nature has enough to satisfy our needs but not our greed. So are we ready to make up our mind to give up some of our luxuries? It is a tough question! And the truth is that we have not done much towards the protection of environment. For us, protection of environment is limited to plating trees and switching of lights when not in use. But there is a lot more to it. There is a list of things that we control which impact the environment. So let’s dig a little deeper and find out what more things we should be doing to protect our planet from the damage that is beyond repair.
We have not even yet fully understood that in what ways we are actually harming our environment. Upon asking question to random people about things we can do for environment protection, we receive answers on following points only-
- Save water
- Save electivity
- Plant trees
- Limit the use of vehicles
Let’s talk about the things we have not thought about yet and enlighten ourselves.
We impact our environment in three ways-
- Every time we consume anything
- Every time we use anything
- Every time we discard anything
We discard our old vehicle before they complete their life cycle. Two decades earlier there used to be only one vehicle per family. How is the situation now? Do we really need three vehicles in a family of five, or we buy it just because we can. In last ten years, each one of us must have bought and discarded at least three mobile phones. Earlier we used to have one phone in one family. But now the situation is like- people are even carrying two mobile phones. Is this the need or the luxury? We don’t have to throw our old mobile phone and get a new one because technology is getting cheaper. It’s important to use a product till the end of the life cycle. That is the most important aspect of environment conservation. Optimum utilization of resource is necessary. We see water, electricity and fuel as our natural resources and talk about conserving them. Mobile phones and all these gadgets also consume our natural resources. So wait couple of years before you replace your old mobile with new mobile for better selfie camera and let your old mobile live its full life.
Now a days we are surrounded with paper napkin. They are everywhere. After every little bite, after every little sneeze, we use and throw one tissue paper. And who are these people who are wiping their hands with paper napkin after lunch and washing their hands anyways. Find out and stop them. So the question is- Do we really need these tissues and paper napkins in our lives? Is it our need or just luxury? People feel free to use these things because they think it is just paper, it is bio-degradable and so it will not do any harm to our environment. We are not talking about its disposal here. We are considering the resources that are used in manufacturing of these things.
After the ban on plastic, all restaurants and food chains are flooded with wooden fork and paper straws. How is that okay? Disposal of these things might be eco-friendly, but what about the energy and electricity and water and other raw materials which are getting consumed at large scale in factories in producing them, so that people don’t have to drink juice directly with the cup? Think about every time you have used a straw, was that a need or luxury?
World is facing problem regarding the waste disposal. If we look into our household, we can see that we are generating more waste than we did ten years before. Generating more waste and doing nothing about it, is not okay. Throwing things is not okay. I do not have to look into any statistics to reach to a conclusion that there is something wrong with us the way we consume our food when I see people throwing away one juice box with one straw after having 200 ml of juice. There is a way to have juice and not having to generate waste. What is that way? Well, there must be. We are human being, we are an intelligent species. I’m sure we can find a way to drink juice without producing any waste.
Let’s talk about paper cups. Plastic is hazardous to health and environment, so disposable plastic cups are gone and paper cups have come to our lives and in tremendous quantity. They are safer for environment. Are they really safer for environment? You know how much resource it consumes to produce one paper cup. Well, I don’t know, you find out. To have two sips of water, we use and throw one paper cup. Tea is now served in paper cups. Apparently, washing a cup is too much trouble. Doesn’t it crush your heart when you crush the paper cup? And there are people who use two paper cups at one time because tea gets hot. Find out who are these people and stop them immediately.
Why is that whenever we are taking a small trip, it becomes necessary to produce one plastic bottle? Try to remember your one last trip by train or flight or bus, which you completed end to end and didn’t generate any plastic bottle waste. For water, why can’t we carry steel bottle while we are travelling and fill it with tap water. Don’t generate plastic waste every time you are thirsty.
Let’s demonstrate our human values towards environment and let’s try to live one day without generating any waste when we consume our food. For example- disposable items like spoons, plates, fork, tissues, packing items like- disposal containers, paper bag, plastic bag, waste from packaged food like- bottles, plastic packet, wrappers. Let proof that we have compassion towards our environment.
Minimize waste and minimize purchases. We don’t have to buy things just because they are cheap. World is running on advertisements these days. Whenever we open our mobile, we are forced to watch few advertisements before we can do anything useful. These advertisements are followed by sales and discounts. And they lure us into buying things which we don’t need. And if only after seeing the advertisement if you realize that you need something, then you don’t really need that thing. So many clothes, furniture, home furnish things, electronic item are lying in your home that you didn’t need. And this is what we call an exploitation of our natural resources. Show love for all items, furniture, gadgets that you own. Let all the products complete their life cycle. We cannot really protect our environment by planting one tree. There are many aspects and all aspects are important.
When we are talking about shopping, we have to have a talk about these online shopping websites. Few year earlier, there used to be two or three online shopping portal. But now everything has its own website for online shopping. A product which is available in your city, and in some cases in shop next to your house, has to travel 1000 km in the plastic and cardboard packaging with thermocol and printed paper receipts. Why? Because it is convenient, doesn’t involve much efforts, and it is cheaper online? Show gratitude and kindness towards environment. Prove that you care about environment and don’t fall prey to this world of discount, if it is making you generate waste.
Now, wherever we throw our waste we generate one waste that is a garbage bag. So to dispose a waste we have to generate a waste. What is wrong with old method? Take dustbin out as it is and empty it and bring it back. The damage that has already been caused to our planet is irreversible. This is the time when our planet needs our consideration more than ever. Understand that your luxury cannot be continued. We have to take our steps in sustainable manners. Show your love to your surroundings. Be grateful for every drop of water and cool breeze. Be kind towards natural resources. Think twice before you throw things, or before you decide to discard things you own. Spread kindness towards the mother earth!