Everyone knows that environment is being degraded; we are facing problems like global warming, climate change, etc ...there are fears that someday this world will come to an end. Can we not do anything about this? Yes, we can; small changes in our lifestyle here and there can make huge differences...and we alone can prevent huge problems that environment face today. Here is how:
a) At Household Level:
1) Utilize natural light (sunlight) as much as possible instead of using light bulbs during the day. Design your house/ study room in such a way that you can take maximum benefit from sunlight; e.g., facing windows towards east helps.
2) Avoid using ACs and coolers as much as possible. Find out natural ways to keep the body cool, like drinking plenty of water. The wastewater from ACs and coolers can be used for other purposes like watering plants or washing the car, etc.
3) Avoid using plastic furniture; it only adds up to the huge amount of non-biodegradable plastic wastes in the world. Switch over to wooden furniture or other natural fibres like jute.
4) Practice kitchen/terrace gardening at your household level. Instead of buying stale/artificially ripened vegetables form the market, you can grow your own safe and healthy food. If you have enough space in your house, try planting fruit trees.
5) Don't throw away the waste kitchen water (used for washing vegetables). It is highly nutritious and can be reused for watering plants. In addition, kitchen wastes like fruits and vegetable peels can act as good manure for your garden.
6) Segregate wastes at your household level, into biodegradable and non-biodegradable. Remember, biodegradable wastes can always be recycled (make your own compost pit); whereas some of the non-biodegradable wastes like old, broken cups or plastic bottles can be used as a pot for plants!
7) You can practice rainwater harvesting at your house, by collecting rainwater in tanks, store for future purposes.
8) Do not allow rainwater to collect in any open pits and holes of your house or your neighbourhood; as later, it becomes the breeding place for mosquitoes and other insects, which are the sources of many diseases. Protect the health of your family.
b) While Travelling:
1) Prefer public transport as much as possible. Prefer travelling by buses to autos.
2) It is better to walk/cycle for short distances (upto 1-2 km). Cycles are not meant for children only, even adults must drive it...it is time we change our mindsets.
3) Avoid high speed driving or listening to loud music in car as that consumes a lot of fuel (an exhaustible resource). Consume only as much as you need.
4) Aeroplanes are one of the largest sources of air pollution; they dump the highest amount of toxic gases into the atmosphere compared to other modes of travel; so it is wise to avoid air travel as much as possible.
5) Be a wise tourist, don't pollute tourist spots with plastic wastes; especially ecological areas like National Parks or Wildlife Sanctuaries. It disturbs the habitat of wildlife.
c) Personal Level:
1) Wear clothes of natural fibre instead of synthetic ones. Natural fibres like cotton, silk, bamboo, etc, are not only biodegradable but also keep the body naturally cool (allow sweat evaporation & air circulation), which the synthetic ones don't. Instead of throwing away your old clothes, donate them to someone in need.
2) Avoid using polythene bags, switch over to jute ones instead. Carrying your own shopping bag is an excellent way of reusing plastic. Also, avoid going to stores which offer polythene bags; reject them then and there.
3) Cosmetic industries use a lot of chemicals in their products. The result is that their wastes, which are dumped into the rivers, causes water pollution and kills many aquatic species. You can stop this by not buying products (soaps/shampoos/creams/drinks) which use chemicals. Search for industries which use organic resources in their products. Some examples are Himalaya, Vicco, Dabur, etc.
4) Avoid eating fast food. A lot of plastic is used for wrapping the food product. When you go to places like Mc Donald's, Pizza Hut, just check the dustbin once, you'll find a huge amount of waste plastic, which later goes to landfills and causes Land and Groundwater pollution. You alone can stop this by being a wise consumer. Reduce consumption and spread awareness amongst people around you.
5) Do not unnecessarily watch TV or use computer when not required. Save electricity. You can plan your day and thus have fixed TV/Comp hours. Also, instead of using a hairdryer, you can go natural.
6) Avoid keeping TV/Comp in standby mode. Save electricity by unplugging the wire as soon as your mobile or laptop has charged.
7) Don't dump away your old mobile phone/comp/laptop. It adds up to the huge amount of non-biodegradable and non-recyclable e-waste (electronic waste). You can donate them to someone instead.
8) Using wooden pencils instead of plastic ones also helps reducing plastic wastes. When you use a wooden pencil, use it completely; don't throw away the ends. Pencil-extenders help here; an old pen cap also does the purpose.
9) Instead of buying new pens every time, you must reuse your old pens (by changing the refill). Avoid using use-and-throw pens.
10) Stop eating non-veg. If you can't stop, you can atleast reduce your consumption like once in a month, or 2-5 times a year or once in a year, depending...
d) Some Other Areas:
1) Always use recycled paper for your work. Don't waste paper. Write on both sides; don't use when not required. Search for companies that produce recycled/environment friendly paper. VidyaPrakashan Mandir, Delhi, is an example.
2) Use your soap bars entirely. Don't throw away the small leftover pieces of soap. You can recycle them to produce your own soap bar.
3) Conserve the habitat of animals by planting more trees, encouraging others to do the same. Donate to organizations (NGOs etc) which work for environment conservation.
4) Spread awareness to people around you. Stop them from polluting the environment then and there.
This is how we can make the big difference for conserving the environment around us. There are many things that we can do, but the question is who actually does them...who takes the action? Are we so lost in our lazy lifestyles that we find it too difficult to follow simple steps such as these? We are so lost in the illusions of life that we forget the realities like this. We keep blaming others for the degraded environment we live in, for the polluted air we breathe; not knowing that we are also responsible for this condition of the environment. We keep hoping that someday the government or some unknown source will do something, not knowing that no one else but we ourselves have the power to create a better environment. We alone can make the change; we alone can make the difference, only if we change ourselves a bit....
<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" />