“It will require an investment of 2.5% of the GDP for two decades to make lasting changes for saving the environment.” BBC
Hailstorm and snowfall in May, unusually dense rainfall in December, scorching heat topping off at 45 degrees in early April – all these are not just paradoxical theories about climate change, it’s the hard-reality today. So much so, that we’re not even alarmed by it anymore. Everywhere you look, a natural catastrophe is taking its toll on the living species. Basically, diverse environment threats are heading for the future and the future is now.
So let’s not limit “save the planet” to a slogan in our Geography books; instead, let’s take some active-yet-practical measures to do our bit for the planet. Here, we will list the top-5 initiatives you can kick start this World Environment Day and balance the scales again in nature’s favour.
1. Airing Out Steps to Reduce Air & Water Pollution
There’s enough data – both online and offline – to understand how we’re polluting the environment day in, day out. So we’ll jump straight to what you can do to reduce water and air pollution. These simple steps can reduce and possibly reverse the damage that’s been done. Carbon pricing is one way of going about it. Campaign in its favour and ensure it gets implemented in your city. Next, try reducing air-conditioning consumption, maintain your vehicles and ensure it’s not emitting CO2, use second-hand goods instead of buying new ones (buying new stuff leads to increased carbon emissions thanks to the industrial factories), and finally, spread the word. You can conduct eco-friendly workshops in your apartment campus and educate your domestic helpers on reducing water wastage – especially when they’re washing dishes. Baby steps can make a huge difference!
2. Warming up to Global Warming is not Really an Option
Research suggests that global emissions of CO2 need to decline by 45% by 2030. There’s a greater need to use renewable energy and conserve natural resources (electricity, coal, fuel etc.) by all means. Data corroborates this – around 85% of global electricity will come from renewables by 2050. We’ve all read about how to save electricity but hardly preach it. It’s time to act on it and try these measures for real: Switch to energy-efficient light bulbs. Switch off lights, computers, TV, etc. when not in use. Use natural sunlight to dry clothes instead of energy-intensive dryers. Opt for washing clothes in cold or warm water. Spend more time outdoors in the company of your loved ones instead of being glued to technology. It’s good for the planet, yes, but it’s even better for your health. Additionally, you can opt for recycling slightly used things and sell unwanted stuff online using a shared platform. Simply put: share, upcycle, repurpose and reuse all resources – natural or otherwise.
3. Rent, Rent, Rent: The Call of Nature.
If we all start renting furniture instead of buying it, the trees will thank us. The amount of wastage that occurs each time you throw away furniture that’s undeniably in a “good condition” is heartbreaking. You can try Furlenco’s exquisite collection and see for yourself. There are many benefits to renting lighter and heavy-duty furniture. One, it’s light on the pocket. Two, Furlenco gives you the option of swapping the collection every time you wish to have a makeover. Three, moving places becomes way easier since you just need to return the furniture. Four, it puts less pressure on our already-depleting natural resources. Need we say more?
4. Food Lifestyle Changes gets a Green Light!
It’s in human nature (pun not intended) to adapt to the dynamic changes we witness every day – climate or otherwise. So, making greener, more organic choices should be a breeze. For one, it is highly recommended that you eat seasonally and eat local. Two, reduced consumption of dairy and meat can do wonders for the planet. Three, and perhaps the most important point is to stop wastage of food altogether. Small efforts such as these can go a long way and pave the path for a greener tomorrow.
5. The Upper Limit: Restrict Global Temperatures to 1.5 degrees C
A recent report suggests that global warming is reaching new heights (pun not intended). It is rapidly inching towards 3C (scientists predict by 2030) when in reality, it should be limited to 1.5 degrees C. So what can be done to get back on the green track? Go green when commuting. First off, opt for electric cars or a healthier, greener option would be to walk/cycle to your destination. Countries like Germany, Sweden, Japan, Finland etc. have already implemented necessary steps for the same. Alternatively, opt for shared cabs and when it comes to international travel, take trains/buses instead of planes to the extent possible. Another idea gaining traction is using video-conferencing means instead of travelling for work – imagine how much fuel you’ll be saving! The underlying advantage is that all these measures reduce heat levels and can help curb the rising global temperatures – a real threat to our economy.
What green tricks do you have up your sleeve? Share your ingenious ideas below and let’s make the world a safer and greener place collaboratively.