Our home, the Great Earth, about 4.54 billion years old, is home to millions of species, including us. It is the only place in the universe where life is known to exist. In course of time, Earth’s biosphere has significantly altered the atmosphere and other abiotic conditions on the planet, enabling the proliferation of aerobic organisms as well as the formation of the ozone layer which, together with Earth’s magnetic field, blocks harmful radiation, permitting life on land. The physical properties of the Earth, as well as its geological history and orbit, allowed life to persist during this period. The world is expected to continue supporting life for another 1.5 billion years, after which the rising luminosity of the Sun may eliminate the biosphere.
Both the mineral resources of the planet, as well as the products of the biosphere, contribute resources that are used to support a global human population. The inhabitants are grouped into about 200 independent sovereign states, interacting with each other in the subjects of travel, business, finance etc. in terms of their political status. Our various cultures have developed many views of the planet. Somewhere, earth has been personified as a deity and somewhere, it is considered as a flat Earth, etc. In course of time, to meet the requirements, the mankind started to use the resources of the earth with new and newer technologies. Every day, efforts are being made to get maximum utility through minimum manual efforts, minimizing human discretion in harnessing them, resulting into imbalanced use of the resources and extinction of many species on earth. Many others are on brink of extinction. Since the earth is expected to continue supporting life for another 1.5 billion years, before the rising luminosity of the Sun may eliminate the biosphere, we need to make it happier by ensuring appropriate use of the NOT-renewable resources and arranging for faster development of renewable resources.
Keeping in view the ensuing dangers of the mad use of the resources of earth, the world community had decided to observe April 22 as Earth Day. The 39th anniversary of this day is dedicated to the beginning of the Green Generation Campaign in which we, in all capacities, must participate actively to defend its core principles like a carbon-free future based on renewable energy that will end our common dependency on fossil fuels, coal and wood etc., our individual commitment to responsible, sustainable consumption and creation of a new green economy to lift people out of poverty by creating millions of quality green jobs and transform the global education system into a green one.
Fortunately, to celebrate Earth Day this year its organizers have returned to environmentalism’s roots. They hope to motivate people across the world to usher in a revolution in minds and lifestyles to reverse environmental decline through a renewed focus on grassroots actions. The Green Generation campaign aims to spur the development of a green economy, reduce reliance on fossil fuels and promote ecologically-responsible consumption. The idea is that this can be achieved from collective small efforts such as buying locally produced products to larger scale projects, such as investing in innovative green technologies.
Efforts can be started anytime anywhere without waiting for any specific occasion since it is the requirement for the survival of the humankind. You know! After attending a UN youth summit, Wilson Ang had founded the Environmental Challenge Organization Singapore (ECO) in 2002, a non-governmental organization dedicated to promoting environmentally sustainable lifestyles for youth in Singapore. Seven years ago, “everything was very raw. It was still about recycling and biodiversity conservation. There wasn’t much commitment and nobody bothered about climate change and energy. Over the past few years it has changed significantly,” said Ang. Through ECO Singapore, Ang has helped to mobilize the local community and garnered the support of Singapore government bodies on green initiatives such as nationwide beach cleanings, the creation of a green business think-tank and educational displays. The Hong Kong-based educator founded Ark Eden, a company that aims to preserve the ecological diversity of Hong Kong’s Lantau Island through educational tours and workshops. Like Ang, Quinton was roused to action not by an environmental campaign but a personal sense responsibility. “I think we have no choice but be part of the green generation,” said Quinton. “The children already are as they have to be. They have so much work to do because of the mess that the adult generation has made.”
Though critics of Earth Day allege that it has moved away from its original message of mass mobilization for the planet and morphed into another means for companies to pay lip-service to environmentalism and appear more eco-friendly. Don’t worry, since its grassroots inception in 1970, the environment has become a mainstream international issue and Earth Day has snowballed into a popular worldwide celebration for the planet. It now has a momentum that has been unmatched in recent years.
Tommy Leggett prepares his boat for what looks like a day of fishing out in Chesapeake Bay. “I’ve been a waterman for over 20 years,” he says. But Leggett doesn’t fish anymore. He’s an eco-conscious farmer who works on his sustainable oyster farm in the James River. The Penn Quarter Market is part of a D.C.-area nonprofit that supports local farmers in an effort to provide urban populations with fresh-from-the-farm products. It also is part of a growing movement of people turning against industrial farming practices. There is a “maker’s movement” gaining prominence on a global scale. One of its pied pipers is a man known by his pen name, Mister Jalopy. His agenda is simple. “You need to be able to modify, hack, repair, rebuild and reuse the stuff that you buy.” Andy Lipkis was 15 on the first Earth Day in 1970. Three years later, he and his friends started TreePeople, a non-profit group whose primary purpose is educating communities on planting and caring for trees and working with government agencies on issue No. 1 in the West: water. Last year, downtown Atlanta lost a convention to another Southern city because the visiting group perceived the other city as “greener.” The loss propelled Holly Elmore into action. The Green Foodservice Alliance founder worked to help create the South’s first Zero Waste Zone. Four years ago, John Winston was watching a late-night news program and saw a segment about converting diesel vehicles to run on alternative fuels. That night, Winston was hooked. He ordered a kit for $900 and proceeded to convert a truck to run on used vegetable oil to save a lot of financial savings and making the environment free of pollution a little on his part. One company in Massachusetts is selling a battery-powered motorcycle. By converting a five-storey “tong lau” — an old Chinese building in Hong Kong — with solar panels, a turf roof and energy efficient appliances, Khan is keen to emphasize that his eco-friendly flat is as much about preserving the old and a sense of heritage as it is about being green.
You too can contribute to this world wide campaign. How? It is so simple. Suppose, you are looking for a house. You need to keep in mind the three rules of real estate, that are location, location and location only. You consider good location as a safe community with good public schools. No, a recent research confirms that where you live has a direct effect on how long you live. According to a team from Brigham Young and Harvard universities, reducing air pollution has extended average life expectancy by five months for urban residents in dozens of U.S. cities over the past two decades. Average life expectancy improved 2.72 years (with five months of that increase attributed to cleaner air). However, the improvements were especially high in the District of Columbia, where residents are living roughly three years longer—most likely because of the profound reductions in particulate matter made in the region. This evidence that extensive clean-up efforts are worth the up-front investment can help environmentalists breathe easy.
Similarly, you can take the following steps:
• Tree planting of local tree species,
• Creating Plant Nurseries in Schools and Colleges,
• Organizing exhibitions, Fairs, social gatherings, Dances, Songs, Poems competitions, music shows essay writing, poster campaign, debates/lectures and charity functions on environment,
• Promoting use of the products/packaging that are recyclable and/or having majority of recyclable ingredients,
• Promoting use of energy efficient electronic appliances,
• Changing light bulbs with compact fluorescent lamps,
• Walking or riding a cycle for short trips
• Preference to organic foods in daily life etc.
In case you have some more ideas, kindly make me and your friends aware of them, inspire them to keep our beloved earth more safe and make it happier for the next generations to enjoy fully.
Be Happy – make earth more safe