World Earth Day – Restoring Our Earth

By Mugdha Patil

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One special day that we celebrate is World Earth Day to remind us of the exceptional world we all live in and to bring to our notice the calamitous situation we face as a result of our own actions towards mother nature.

Our earth is a magnificent piece of creation by the supreme crafted piece by piece, dot by dot to perfection where every single being plays a vital role. This blue dot is the only place in the whole universe that supports life and nourishes us with endless resources. But alas, humans have failed to understand its importance! From pollution to deforestation, mining, carbon emissions, water wastage, poaching and indefinite other actions have triggered climate change, poor air quality, undrinkable water, and other catastrophic problems.

22nd April is celebrated as the World Earth Day every year since 1970 to illustrate the need to change the way we treat our mother nature and to recommend innovative and effective solutions to help her restore. It has now become an occasion cherished worldwide with 193 countries promoting the need for change. Be it from different religions, cultures, gender, race, or diverse backgrounds, it unifies everyone and breaks the man-made boundaries as Earth is all we have in common, as rightly said by Wendell Berry.

But why only one day, the Earth fosters us humans perpetually and yet we fail to return her favour.

Earth’s resources are enough to cater to the needs of humans if used wisely but greed is an evil. Destruction of our ecosystem and depletion of resources would become inevitable if our temptation and greed continues. Mahatma Gandhi’s words best describe this notion, “There is enough for everyone’s need not for everyone’s greed”. If humans persist to be intransigent, in the next 40 years the survival of the personages would become strenuous. We would exhaust our planet, the manoeuvre that we call as the ultimate plan would pave the way for our extinction.

To attain a serene, convenient and a seemingly better life, we are rapidly developing our technology. However, we tend to forget the superfluous trash we are leaving behind for our future generations. We live in uncertain times, where natural calamities like floods, drought, untimely rainfall, landslides, cyclones are so unpredictable which is all an effect of man-made changes to the climate. Modern technology should be used productively, like satellite images monitoring forest covers to avoid deforestation. Such innovative ideas should be enforced to a greater extent to help restore our mother Earth.

 We frequently talk about the development of our planet. The homo sapiens must be reminded that Earth does not belong to them alone but also to the pious creatures, animals, and birds. We would lose them forever if they are not protected from human deeds.

The outrageous pandemic caused by the virus is not just a bizarre accident, rather an omen of grave portent of the disharmony and grief of mankind.

It is now time to rectify our mistakes and restore the perished. Aptly titled, this year’s theme for Earth Day, “Restore Our Earth” connoting that not only reducing the climate problems means saving our planet but also working towards restoration of the treasured macro monas, our eco systems, oceans, and everything we have ever lost for our posterity.

Humans need Earth, Earth does not need Humans. Reducing usage of plastic, adapting to the three R’s, switching to green energy like solar or even turning off lights and faucets, small yet significant steps in achieving our bigger goal. Educating people about the egregious circumstances of our planet and illuminating them of the possible solutions can become the foundation of a sustainable society. Especially educating children, the next generation is a vital step as it helps them think as citizens of the world having the power to change.

Our small habits and changes in lifestyle can help solve a lot of crises. Whether it is using less paper, walking instead of driving, or even having showers for only 5 minutes makes all the difference. Nations worldwide have acted but unless we don’t act, nothing can be changed. The Paris agreement was signed in the United Nations but not implemented everywhere effectively. Various organisations organise programs and plans to restore our Earth.

The major source of food, the farmers should be helped by educating and spreading awareness about the latest techniques through which they can renew their land, restore the soil fertility and maximise their crop production. This regenerative agriculture combats climate change and promotes food security. Other such innovative solutions must be implemented and made sure that in every sphere we minimise waste, pollution and take steps to restore our Earth.

Indeed, these lines by Margaret Mead would clear all our self-doubts and inspire you. “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, that is the only thing that ever has”. On this Earth Day, let’s pledge to restore our Earth because it is our actions that make a difference. It is time to take initiative, engage in volunteering work, plant a tree, clean up your surroundings and spread the awareness of restoring our Earth.                                                          

 If not us, then who?

By Mugdha Patil, Pune

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