Humans are peculiar beings. Apart from deriving pleasure from futile discussions and raging wars, they have, with time cultivated a hobby of destroying their habitation knowingly and willingly. We have an impeccable track record of dismantling every form of life and nature. We’ve altered the natural world at an unprecedented rate, accelerated the doomsday clock, and that too within 200,000 years of our existence.
We have time and again proved that, we don’t need a Thanos, Ares or Loki to destroy our planet. We’re very much capable and self sufficient in destroying that which made and nurtured us. If I had a rupee for every time a political leader ridicules and rejects the existence of this imminent threat, I’d have 15 lakhs in my bank account already.
The US President terms climate change as a ‘hoax’ and aspires to buy Greenland from Denmark. We can only hope that he finalises this deal before the last bit of ice at Greenland melts and submerges Miami.
The Brazilian President Bolsonaro has also maintained that it’s indeed a hoax and Brazil doesn’t owe anything to the world about the environment, indicating that his government isn’t interested in stopping the Amazon fire.
This blunt denial and lack of political willingness to combat this disaster is chilling and the worst is yet to come. However, India’s current government has done some remarkable progress in renewable energy front and is committed to expand its capacity and reduce its greenhouse emissions. India has been at the forefront of adopting cleaner fuels and is striving and struggling to find a balance between growing economically and reducing carbon emissions.
But, an exploding population and incessantly growing demand has led to plundering of Earth’s resources. Fulfilling the demands of an ever growing population has put an enormous pressure on Earth, altering its climate.
India has lost over hundreds of crores due to extreme weather events. We’re growing unsustainably and this has huge ramifications on our very existence. Despite knowing the implications of our actions, we’ve kept on doing that for centuries.
Isn’t it too late now to make amends for the damages we’ve done? Probably not.
Are we ready to take radical steps to outsmart this disaster? Probably not.
Are we doomed? Probably yes.
This isn’t fear-mongering, but the plain truth. Sea levels are rising, cyclones are getting more frequent and stronger, there is a change in climate patterns, heat-waves, droughts are recurrent and world temperature is rising as if the world has become a giant barbecue. What has been our general response to these problems? To plant trees.
But here’s some facts. Mass tree plantations are generally monoculture in nature, which means, a single species planted over thousands of hectares. They’re harvested in a short time and release much of the carbon stored in them back into the atmosphere. Monoculture plantations are more motivated because of money, and less because of love for nature.
Instead of monoculture plantation, humans must opt for a mixed-tree plantation. These plantations must be protected and preserved by local communities. Planting mustn’t be a priority, preserving should be.
But is it really about saving Earth? The planet has been through a lot worse than what’s it’s facing right now. Earthquakes, continental drift, solar flares, magnetic storms, hundreds of thousands of years of bombardment by asteroids and meteors, floods, tidal waves, fires, erosion, and recurring ice ages. The list goes on.
We’re just a spoke on the wheel, even if we’re gone, the wheel’s going to keep turning. This planet is a self correcting system and it’ll be here for a long time after we’re gone, it will heal and cleanse itself. This planet isn’t going anywhere, we’re going. Yet, it’s always been about saving us and us only.
Searching for an alternative planet for our survival is far-fetched and the Earth seems to be our only chance. Let’s atleast try to do most out of the only chance we have.
We can get out of our homes and act in thousands of ways through which we can slow this beast down or alternatively, we can sit back at home and ponder over million of ways by which this disaster could possibly kill us, which ranges from getting burnt down to ashes through heat waves to getting frozen to death. The choice is ours.
There’s no planet B. We need to save us from ourselves.