Earth Says, “It Starts With You!”

Oftentimes in our lives, we tend to miss smaller changes. Human behaviour, right? 

Remember, this one time when you missed noticing your friend’s new haircut? Or when you didn’t notice the weather going bad and you left the laundry outside? Or that banana you bought and forgot inside the fruit basket that turned stale and smelly? Oh well, friend, you can apologize too. Laundry you can put out to dry again and the banana can be consumed in a milkshake.

Seems your ignorance caused some problems however the good news is, that they were solvable. Not always though!

Unlike the smaller actions, environmental deterioration has today become a stack of small changes that occurred over many, many years and is now becoming a mammoth and unsolvable problem. If the world’s top scientists are to be believed, this much avoidable list of changes is going to erupt like a volcano, literally. 

Now one may think, that responding to global environmental threats as a society should be one of the key priorities of every human on this planet however the question arises- is it really? As daunting as it may be, the answer remains to be a ‘No’ for many years now. A huge part of the human race continues to damage large portions of resources such as air, water and land, despite a massive wave of awareness. The actions or rather lack of by these people is going to cause a ripple effect and impact generations to come. And I hope when you read this, you enunciate the word ‘generations’ just to realize the gravity of this issue. If you didn’t do well then let me reiterate, imagine this is the beginning of time and the effect of what you do today is going to continually impact humans even in say, the 2000s. To give an example, currently, it is estimated that 95 per cent of the Earth’s land areas could become degraded by 2050 due to unsustainable practices. What’s more is that if global temperatures rise by 3.2 degrees Celsius, it is expected to wipe off nearly 18% of GDP from the world economy by mid-century in addition to many other highly destructive problems that every living species will have to face.

Are humans causing problems for themselves? At this point, to even call this ironic would be a disrespect to nature. It is not ironic, it is a simple example of the saying ‘you reap what you sow’. Except in the real world, we aren’t sowing as much. We urgently need to bolster our efforts toward a more sustainable environment and realise that if it is us who is causing the problems then there is a role for us in solving them too. It indeed starts with smaller things, smaller lifestyle changes, and smaller efforts. Turn the tap off if it is dripping, switch off the lights as you leave a room, travel in a carpool to work, limit or avoid the use of plastics, ensure most of what you use is reusable, ensuring lesser trash.

Practice, practice, practice and any of what is written in the previous sentence wouldn’t take a second extra to do, but just a little more thought. While these may not be the one-stop solution to the bigger problem, these smaller steps will buy us some time to deal with the bigger challenges. It starts with you! These earth-friendly habits are often overlooked but these form the basics of a sustainable life.

After reading this, if anyone of you sees June 5, 2022, differently and make a fresh start, you already are on a path to saving the environment. And, thank you. As much as it goes against the efforts that I had put into writing this, in the larger scheme of things, one can really hope that there comes a day when we don’t have to write such pieces to evoke a sense of oneness amongst people towards nature and that such environment conscious acts are a part of our day-to-day. 

Years from now, let’s aim to gift that generation a world that has abundant blue waters, lush green lands, and healthy air because you and I took an action and built a habit to respond to the earth’s burning demand.

Sumedha Kanwar

The PRactice