Saturday, June 06, 2009

World Environment Day!

Yday was World Environment Day.
World Environment day, WED as it is called was established by the UN Genral assembly in 1972. It is hosted by a different country each year and commemorated with an international exposition through the week of June 5. The UN Enviroment Programme (UNEP), also created in 1972, uses WED to stimulate awareness of the environment and enhance political attention and public action.

As obvious as it could get, this year, there was an increasing awareness amidst the people or atleast the educated masses who cared for our very own one and only Earth!

There were n number of campaigns. Don’t do this.. Don’t do that... so this.. Do that.. etc., etc.,
The lingo people started throwing around 1 week before the day on every television channel, newspaper, FM radio stations and many more were - Carbon footprint, Global Warming, Making different campuses Plastic-free etc etc..

Though some of them sound like jargons, here are a few very very simple things which each of us can do. After all, small things make a big difference. Dont they?

1. Carry your won shopping bag. Use a cloth bag instead of a getting a plastic bag every time.
2. Do not use your car/bike unless and until absolutely necessary. You can - walk, take public transport, carpool or telecommute as far as possible.
3. As far as possible, avoid disposable materials - use reusable materials instead. Examples : use food containers instead of aluminum wraps/foils, Coffee mugs instead of disposable cups, reusable blades for razors instead of disposable ones, towels instead of tissue papers.
4. Golden Rule : Do not waste water! One effective technique is to fill water as much as you need it in a container and use it than to directly open down from the tap - while bathing, brushing, washing your face, shaving, washing vessels, washing clothes et al. I am sure you can add a lot many things like this. Use water only as much as you can. Water, is precious!!
5. Papurus - one of the greatest inventions by mankind! Today, though many offices/establishments are working towards the concept of paperless office, it only can be minimized to an extent. In the sense, it cannot be completely eliminated. It is needless to say how many trees are cut for the cellulose which is required fo rmaking paper. A few things tried and tested - circulate documents as soft copy instead of hard copies. If you buy news paper, please sell it off a garage wala so that it is recycled. Reuse paper!
6. Turn Vegetarian! Reduces your carbon foot print.
7. Turn off fans, lights and other electrical/electronic gadgets when not in use. Best still, dont turn them on unless necessary. As far as possible, leverage on natural lighting, ventilation etc.
8. Plant a tree. Do not cut trees. If you cannot do the former, at least do that latter!
9. Ok, this one - I am definitely not kidding! Do not hesitate to wear your jeans/corduroys at least a couple of times more than to dump it for washing immediately. Saves - water, detergent and also reduces the amount of domestic effluent!
10. If the infrastructure in your house allows - do vermi composting for the Kitchen/garden waste.
11. Turn off your engine at long traffic signals.
12. Donate the things which are no longer useful to you instead of merely throwing them away!
13. Sleep with windows open with lots of cross ventilation instead of closing yourself shut with AC on!
14. Avoid buying items with plastic containers. Buy stuff that comes in tetra packs/glass containers. Buy them in Bulk instead of small quantities.
15. Segregate wet waste and dry waste from your house and dispose accordingly. The wet waste like kitchen waste and garden waste is composted/vermi composted. The Dry waste like paper, bottles etc should be given to a vendor and recycled. The toxic wastes like batteries, soiled bandages, E-waste – CDs, floppies etc should be landfilled.
Remember the 3 Rs – Reduce, Reuse and Recycle! If you consciously try this, that by itself is a great contribution and will definitely make our world a better place to live in!

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