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All India Radio (AIR): World Earth Day

  • August 4, 2017
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All India Radio
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World Earth Day

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Search 22nd April 2017 http://www.newsonair.com/Main_Audio_Bulletins_Search.aspx

TOPIC: General Studies 3

  • Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment

Background

A person named Hayes in 1970 started a movement because he was making his best effort to be heard in US congress. But no one was paying attention to his plea that environment is important and something needs to be done about it. So as an alternative, he decided to go to the people as ultimately the environment belongs to the people. So what started as a people’s movement ultimately became an international issues.

World Earth Day started as a programme or a movement in US but now it is a much bigger global movement. It is now recognized as an International Day by UN. The theme of 2017 is ‘Environmental and climate literacy’. It is not only about advancement of environment and climate laws and policies and creating awareness but also about creating green technology and job.

No ground impact

The climate determines everything- economy, human health, job and culture and literature.  Environment is a master factor. These issues are such which really affect people in general. Their deterioration and improvement is not a personal gain but a societal loss and gain. But people think that protecting environment is not their personal task, thereby leading to constant changes in climate.

Forty-seven years ago, the theme for World Earth Day was ‘Environmental and Climate Literacy’. Things haven’t changed much since then, and so the theme is being adopted again this year.

India has a huge challenge of air and water pollution which needs urgent attention but it is not getting so. The issue of environment and climate change should go up onto national agenda in a big way. However, the emphasis is not as much as it should have been.

Challenges faced

The issue is pollution of environment and the people are getting deprived of the basic needs like clean air and clean water. Population is growing, most of the people do not have necessary sewerage, necessary discharge and facility of hygiene. These things are essential and need lot of improvement as ultimately it affects the health, family structure and affects the national exchequer.

The purpose of such day is to develop environmentally alert places, especially cities so that the respective governments can be pressurized or educated by the electorate to protect the environment.

The extensive use of fossil fuels has led to global warming problem and climate change. Though the international leaders at international forums say many things, it is only reflecting their country’s best interest afterall. After so many negotiations, the leaders say that till 2030 some status quo will be maintained in name of development.

The importance of theme

To tell people and make them realize that environment affects their every activity. If the agriculture is not well due to poor environment condition needed for sufficient crop production, then the industry also suffers. So the industry, prosperity, national GDP is all dependent upon the kind and the way the environment is treated.

The purpose of this theme is to tell people how they are affected by the climate and how their actions are affecting climate. This is the kind of literacy which has to be advocated. If it is possible to do that people will lead a very prosperous life.

In India, people know the importance of environment but it is not in a way that it should be. There is a day required in India too when the people are made to realize their relationship with environment.

Way forward

There needs to be increased activities from India’s research organizations and universities because awareness can come from that end also given the wide variety of people present. There is need for capitalizing this kind of behavior which is environmentally more aware.

Various directions and diktats from NBT and SC says that there should be an environmental position till panchayat level which takes care of the environmental issues. Also, good environment has jobs attached to it but that realization has also not come.

Swachh Bharat Abhiyan- a measure towards keeping clean environment

There is a political will, political focus and money also put into cleanliness and sanitation. But people are still not ready to accept the changes that require to maintain a clean environment.

There lacks a talk in holistic manner where people are encouraged to change their behavior. If people are expected to segregate waste, there should be somebody who has to provide different bins to keep dry and wet waste. In absence of that, merely saying that there should be segregation has no meaning. If there is no collecting system where the segregated material can be separately collected and processed or the other end of waste processing is not ready, there is no point in segregation of waste at the collection level.

Conclusion

There is a need to encourage recycling technology. Most of the material waste is capable of being recycled and reused. Rather than mining more material and destroying the environment, there should be insistence on reuse. These things have not been given proper and comprehensive thought because there is need to have an alternative.

There have to be various kinds of campaigns designed for the specific audience, especially targeting school, college and administrative level and political level. There has to be informed courses for managers/supervisors/administrators working in the environment area. The sanitary departments and others have the knowledge of human health but not much understanding of environmental waste.

Connecting the dots:

  • Clean environment is the manifestation of human existence. Discuss with suitable illustrations.

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