Climate change is the result of human actions that leads to the degradation of land, loss of productive system and biodiversity. Do you know our earth contains 70% of water and 95.7% is seawater which is unfit for human consumption? As per research, in the year 2000 to 2050, the demand for water will globally increase by 55% which will be utilized for agriculture and food products which are required to feed the growing population. India alone is generating 1.7 Lakh tons of waste per day and of which 95% is unsegregated. Imagine, if one country is generating that much waste, then what percentage of the whole world is generating waste in one day?
Ganga basin is the lifeline of India’s Northern Population. But every year the Ganga basin is depleting by approx. 6.31 centimetre due to the growing population and irrigation demand. On the other hand, ice is rapidly depleting from the Arctic Ocean which is a key component of the earth system. In spite of knowing the scenario, instead of utilizing water judiciously, we started polluting it which not only affects the health of human beings drastically but has also become the cause of death of aquatic animals. Industrial pollution is wildly increasing and the emission of toxic chemicals and harmful waste causes air and water pollution. The polluted water and disposal of harmful waste affect groundwater which may be unusable for decades and spread contamination.
Climate change affects the lives of individuals at a wide range. India is the most polluted country in the world. People are bound to breathe hazardous air, as they are left with no other option. In 2019, India faced extreme weather changes from drought due to high temperature to flooding due to heavy rainfall. Bihar & Assam faced a devastating flood, North & Central India dealt with a deadly heatwave, Mumbai suffered from worst torrential rain whereas Orissa faced Cyclone Fani. If we see the Southern region of India, Chennai suffered from the worst drought in the last 70 years, whereas Kerala & Karnataka suffered from deadly floods. The situation is critical all over the world, from the year 2011 to 2016, California faced one of the worst droughts in 1200 years which dried up nearly 1900 wells.
However, the younger generation is stepping forward to save our planet, some of them are:
Valentina Elangbam, 9-year-old girl from Manipur, is named as Green Ambassador of the Chief Minister’s Green Manipur Mission Scheme by the CM N Biren Singh. She is so deeply concerned about trees that she started crying when the Assam Government started cutting down the trees to expand the roads.
11 years old, Ridhima Pandey from Uttrakhand is concerned about the depletion of river Ganga due to rising temperatures and pollution manifested by the people in the name of religion such as Kanwar yatra. She filled a petition against 5 countries for climate change.
Nivedha (23), Bangalore based professional who quit her job as she was concerned about where does the waste go after the municipality takes it from our home. When she got to know how the waste gets burnt by the municipality, she decided to prepare a machine which segregates biodegradable and non-biodegradable waste. She made “Trashbot” which segregates waste to more than 90% efficiency. She used non-biodegradable waste efficiently by preparing partition walls, chairs, tables, roofing tiles, etc.
Arun Krishnamurthy (32), a Chennai based Environmentalist who left his job at Google. He cleaned and restored at least 93 lakes/ freshwater bodies across 14 Indian States. He believed that lakes are not only for human beings but also for the animals and polluting lakes. With this believe he undertakes cycle tours to lakes and habitats for children on a weekly basis and also provides information on biodiversity through wall painting.
Jadav Payeng, known as the “Forest Man of India” spent 30 years of his life creating a man-made forest on around 550 hectares of land. The forest creates by Jadav helps in retaining wildlife and also helps Assam people to live their lives in a healthy way. In the same way, Manipur based Moirangthem (45), planted 300-acre Punshilok forest in Langol hill range for 17 years.
Shikha Shah, who runs Canva Fabric Labs LLP researched on the usage of the preparation of Textile Fabric and got to know that to make one cotton shirt, it takes approximately 2750 litre of water. She wanted to take its sustainability to a high scale and decided to convert agricultural waste which doesn’t contain any toxic substances into textile fabrics.
Smita Singhal, running Delhi based firm – Absolute Water Pvt. Ltd. which filter untreated wastewater into usable water by using a technique of vermiculture. India has 338 billion untreated water to serve 90 billion people and bio-filtering the wastewater through insects, worms, and gravity sand filter is the best way to reuse the water with low maintenance costs.
Tarun Bothra, co-founder of Saathi Manufacturing Company which makes eco-friendly hygiene products with zero-waste production. Saathi concerned about the using of plastics or chemicals based pads which contain 3.4 kg of plastic which means average women will generate 23kg of plastic from sanitary pads. Saathi prepare Pads from banana fibres with zero wastage and these pads are 1200 times faster than plastic pads. By making sustainable and natural pads, the usage of plastic gets reduce and the income of farmers gets increased.
We are living on Earth as tenants but we are not paying any EMI for that. We know that the land is our mother who provides us food to be alive and water is the lifeline of both human beings and aquatic animals. If we are responsible for the devastation of climate, then we have to take an initiative to save the planet. Save Earth, there is no Planet B!