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Environment protection – a smart practice to protect us and our planet

Environment protection – a smart practice to protect us and our planet

Before moving to the need of Environment Protection, let’s begin with what the term “environment” means.

In our daily lives and in almost any sphere of our work we commonly come across the term “environment” or aspects related to it. But, do we really understand what this word means?

The word environment defines a place or atmosphere in which all living organisms dwell and survive within their own favorable zones.

In simpler terms, it is the entire natural surroundings around us that form the basis of our survival and the reason for our planet’s existence. Thus, our environment is something that we shouldn’t be neglecting. Although nature and its creatures have been created in such a way that they can adapt to the constant changes to survive and sustain lives in their own favorable way, the constant human interventions have disrupted this natural process causing extensive destruction in more than one single way.

Hence, it is critical for us to protect our environment so as to reduce the devastating impacts on the ecosystems caused by a myriad of anthropogenic activities. Thus the act of protecting our environment refers to the actions actively taken and adapted to protect and save our environment from the dire and vandalizing impact of human and human-made activities.

Protecting the environment must come as second nature to humans as it is more of a moral obligation for humans to protect and conserve the environment that we live in from pollution and other detrimental activities that lead to environmental degradation. Evidently, environmental degradation in the long run directly threatens the health of all the inhabitants forming the eco-system i.e. animals, humans and plants.

Events like air, soil and water pollution, global warmingdeforestation, wildfires, acid rains, smog, excessive mining, oil spillage and the like are the main causes of environmental degradation and pollution that we are facing right now.

One doesn’t need to offer financial help or conduct one or two days campaign to spread the notion to save or protect the environment, rather as “charity begins at home”, with everyday simple habits and changes in one’s lifestyle this can become possible yielding long-term positive results by gradually reducing carbon footprints.

Everywhere on this planet, wherever life exists, all species live together and depend on one another. Being co-related and co-dependent we as a civilization and ecosystem are so much dependent on each factor that the absence or disbalance of any will make it hard for us to adapt, survive and sustain. A phenomenon like pollution, global warming, high pressure of growth in population, overconsumption, technological advancement, climate change, or interfering human activities has numerous unforeseen impacts, that snowball into the destruction of entire ecosystems.

What is environmental protection?

Environmental protection is the practice by which you can protect your natural habitat from other individuals, organisations, or from governments. Protecting the environment means conserving, reserving the current trends and repairing the damages done to the existing natural resources.

Therefore, in other words, environmental protection can be described as an act of preventing and protecting unwanted changes to the fundamental parts of the ecosystem due to human activities. The measures taken to protect the environment are mainly associated with the small steps you as an individual and a responsible inhabitant of the environment take.

Importance of practicing environmental protection and 7 ways we can follow that –

Tremendous changes are irreversible as a lot of degradation cannot be fixed for a span of hundreds of years. If we fail to protect our environment or wait any longer then we might as well start losing components of our ecosystem causing disruption and imbalance in the biodiversity. Educating people about these causes and explaining the ways to protect our environment by small changes in behaviour and attitude towards life are the main keys to achieving our goals.

What actions/reasons cause damage to our environment?

  • Untreated air emissions emitted into the atmosphere due to commercial and industrial activity leads rise in the level of greenhouse gases.
  • Pieces of land left unused for many years pose a threat of potential contamination.
  • Depleting of the ozone layer due to Chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), a type of inert chemical released from refrigerators and air conditioners.
  • Drastic and sudden climate changes due to increased industrial emissions of greenhouse gases. The reduction of carbon sinks in the ocean can also be the cause of the same.
  • Commercial wastes are created and emitted from industrial or commercial production.
  • Excessive removal of silt and mud and disruption of the rock bedding of the river can cause floods, this process is called dredging.
  • Wearing of land away with time i.e. soil erosion.
  • Usage of different hazardous materials like chemical pollutants that are corrosive, flammable or toxic in nature or agricultural field run-offs into water bodies.
  • Smog is a direct result of industrial emissions and smoke from burning waste materials.

Being consumers we are dependent on these things and the key is not to stop consuming, but we need to start becoming mindful of our consumption habits and how our activities effects and impact our environment.

The good news is that it’s neither too difficult, nor too expensive or inconvenient for us to practice and incorporate environment-friendly options in our day-to-day life. You can begin it as a fun challenge for yourself and implement it among your family or coworkers. And gradually you’ll notice that these small changes which at an individual level may seem trivial initially, compounded over the years into behavioral modifications resulting in a cleaner and healthier planet and surroundings.

Following here are 7 ways in which your small efforts can bring drastic changes in protecting the environment –

  1. Consume Less –

Less is more and curbing consumption can have an outright huge impact on the environment. Using the three “R’s” – “reduce, reuse and recycle” – is a smart way of putting more things to use. However, there’s another hidden R which is to date most underrepresented i.e. “refuse”.

When you decide to consume less and start refusing a lot of things, you’ll see that there are a majority of things that you didn’t even need to begin with, in the first place. These unwanted things clutter up in homes, consume space and eventually end up in the trash. So, saying “NO” to non-essential items can truly improve your life.

It will also save you money and reduce the amount of clutter in your home.

  • Compost –

Apart from Reduce, Recycle, Reuse and Refuse another “R” that brings a significant impact is “Rot”. Instead of sending it to the landfill, you can add your vegetable and fruit peels, biodegradable waste, food and yard waste to rot i.e. let it compost.

Composting food scraps, and yard waste can be rewarding in unimaginable ways. First, you can keep an incredible amount of trash out of the waste stream and secondly, you can also use this compost as manure for your garden as it will increase and make your garden soil rich and highly fertile.

  • Choose reusable goods over single-use –

Instead of opting for disposable materials, or using single-use materials, try to switch to reusable or multi-usage products. All these single-usage products end up in trash cans or due to negligence of people in the soil. And in the bigger picture, it causes devastating effects on our soil, oceans and marine life. Choosing reusable items will also let you have fewer waste products and by doing so, you’ll be helping to protect the environment.

  • Upcycle and buy secondhand –

Upcycling to get creative with trash will allow you to turn your useless or unwanted items into treasure. You can use unwanted products to turn them into artworks, toys or jeweler. Not only it will keep fewer items in the trash can, but it will also prevent you from purchasing new items. It will soar your imagination, and help you get some personal creative time with yourself.

Another smart thing you can do is to buy secondhand. Even if the idea doesn’t sound interesting, you will be surprised to know that it takes over 700 gallons of water to grow enough cotton to make just one plain t-shirt.

So, the next time when you think of heading over to a mall to buy yourself a new pair of clothes, consider a local thrift store or vintage shop or something fun as a cloth swap with your friends. Not only it will breathe new life into your wardrobe, but you’ll be protecting the environment without wasting the precious resources that were needed to produce new clothing. You can buy secondhand products in any category you wish to such as children’s games and toys, shoes, appliances, furniture, cars, houses, etc.

  • Choose local brands over big ones –

Just as you discovered that almost 700 gallons of water are used to produce enough cotton for just one t-shirt, then think of all that packaging, combined with the fuel needed for delivery which brutally takes a toll on the environment.

Instead of doing so, you can go over at local farmers and producers. Rather than picking packaged foods, the market for fresh, farm-to-table foods and pick such eateries, buy from local artists, clothing makers, and retailers before you click for that two-day online shipping.

  • Go less on chemicals –

Using fewer harmful and harsh chemicals will bring you back on the right track to doing what you exactly should be doing to promote environmental protection. Every single person on this planet is more or less acquainted with how chemicals can have long-term negative effects both on our bodies and on the planet. Hence, it would be a smart choice and best in our interest best to avoid them as far as possible. Opting for chemical-free lawn and garden care, choosing natural beauty and daily use items, natural household cleaners and organic food will eventually make your body and Earth thank you.

  • Conserve water and electricity –

Conserving water and electricity at home is one of the simplest and easiest ways to protect our environment. Incorporating these small habits into our daily lives will make it a habit to practice these small things, leading to bigger results. Anytime you use less water and electricity, it’s a win for the planet.

Such as –

  • Turn off the faucet when not using it or while brushing your teeth.
  • Fix leaking faucets and if possible use more efficiency by aerating faucets, using sprinklers that reduce runoff and installing low-flow toilets and efficient shower heads.
  • Collect and use rainwater for watering gardens and washing areas.
  • Shorten shower periods.
  • Run the dishwasher or washing machine only when it is full.
  • Use more energy-efficient CFLs or LEDs instead of incandescent bulbs.
  • Use smart power strips which turn off the power to electronics when they’re not being used.
  • Unplug power cords from the wall when items aren’t in use.
  • Go solar if you can.
  • Maintain your heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) system.
  • While buying an appliance, choose an Energy Star-certified model.
  • Use ceiling fans rather than AC.

To promote and raise awareness among people, SENSED has begun M.P’s first environment weekly, “The Karmik Post” in 2015. Since 2011 SENSED has been conducting activities, seminars and programmes like “Climate Change Vulnerability and Adoption AssementProgramme”, “Environmental Awareness Program”, “Samagra SwachhataAbhiyans in villages”,” Save Water Campaign”, “Cultural Programme” on the environment, “Plantation Programme”, promoting “Organic Farming”, performing “Nukkad Natak” on the need for protecting the environment.

If we all perform our part well and take even small steps every day towards reducing our negative environmental impact, we will thank ourselves in the future for all the benefits. These small yet super effective habits not only would allow us to rebuild a healthy relationship with nature but will also let us live and sustain in a cleaner environment, reducing the chances of health problems. Protecting our environment is also directly related to enhancing a way of leading a better lifestyle for ourselves while thanking our planet for all that it has provided us.

Also Read: Women Empowerment – strengthening the pillars of our future

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