Environmental Awareness

ENVIRONMENTAL AWARENESS “The Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s needs, but not every man’s greed. ” – Mahatma Gandhi. The ‘Environment’ is a term used to represent an entire systems, geology, and climate. An Environment can be any scale, including global, regional, local, and even down to single locations, and things like buildings. Often the phrase ‘the environment’ is used to denote the global environment, or a larger regional environment.

On a more human level, the environment, the air, water, temperature, and biology of a certain extent of a place are what sustain us, and define the limits of what we can do to a certain extent. Prior to the industrial revolution, the local environment, especially food and water supplies was the main limit to human life. Since the industrial revolution, it has become possible to transport both food and water over long distances, without them rotting or fouling. Certain technologies have made this easier, as well as reducing the amount of work needed to grow and harvest food and water.

More advanced shelter systems have also meant that there are more possibilities for settling hostile environments. In a sense, this means that in the modern all humans are in effect no longer living in a local environment, but only as part of a single global environment. Environmental awareness envisions the increasing of awareness and understanding of the environment through education. Most of our population is not aware of our finite resources and how quickly they are being used up. By its very definition “awareness” means “having knowledge or cognizance”.

The main goal of many environmental groups today is to increase awareness because that is the only way to develop a more sustainable world. Accordingly, all environmental awareness must begin with education. Today, the media greatly shapes what the general population thinks about the environment. Often, the news does not go into detail about the causes of an event, such as a flood, and spends much more time on the newest celebrity couple or terrorist event. Such treatment by the media greatly reduces the impact of environmental events.

The media is doing a good job of downplaying global warming, if it is as big a crisis as claimed to be. The media wants stories with conflict, personality and an event, and often the melting of caps provides no such story, therefore many environmental events do not make the news. Also, the details of the story are at the editor’s digression so they can select and deploy facts about environmental debates and conflicts that do not necessarily reflect the environmental events or awareness that should be the focus.

There are many other factors what gets put into the news, such as new technology and the converging of large stations. “The convergence of media ownership into the hands of just a few vast multi-media companies engaged in intense competition may result in homogenization of the news and bias in reporting: environmental stories may find it more difficult to get space in this context, but when they do they are not likely to make a bigger impact”. There is also a large increase in active environmental groups today that have increased advertising and awareness in commercials and online sites.

Many authors have put out books explaining what is going on, trying to capture an audience that cares and instigate action. Most of our population today is still unaware of the effects of polluting or the threat to our freshwater resources and through education and increasing awareness hopefully a colossal change will come about our society. CONSERVATION of RESOURCES Conservation stands for many things. The conservation movement (which began in the U. S. and British India in the mid-nineteenth century) has always primarily been associated with the protection of the earth’s natural resources, wildlife and habitat.

The growing trend these days is to include the conservation movement into the more expansive and all-encompassing environmental movement that has largely been sparked by the threats of global warming. Taking a holistic approach to saving the earth, many of today’s modern day conservationists focus on everything from pollution and energy usage to ecological health and peaceful coexistence with the animal kingdom. In other words, the same ideals are being shared by what is commonly deemed the ecology movement, green movement, peace movement and environmental movement.

It’s no coincidence that one of the most famous groups working in the name of these ideals calls themselves Green Peace. Water conservation can be defined as (a) any beneficial reduction in water loss, use or waste as well as the preservation of water quality, (b) a reduction in water use accomplished by implementation of water conservation or water efficiency measures or, (c) improved water management practices that reduce or enhance the beneficial use of water. A water conservation measure is an action, behavioural change, device, technology, or improved design or process implemented to reduce water loss, waste, or use.

Water efficiency is a tool of water conservation. That results in more efficient water use and thus reduces water demand. The value and cost-effectiveness of a water efficiency measure must be evaluated in relation to its effects on the use and cost of other natural resources (e. g. Energy or chemicals). Water can be conserved in a lot of ways and most of us are aware of those means. It is our duty to actually implement those in our daily life. Practises in homes like closing the shower while not standing under it, avoiding unnecessary flushing the toilet, checking for leakage in pipes, closing the tap while not using, etc.

Technical methods like rainwater harvesting, educating people in rural areas about water conservation, etc are also useful in conserving water. Soil conservation is a set of management strategies for prevention of soil being eroded from the Earth’s surface or becoming chemically altered by overuse, acidification, salinization or other chemical soil contamination. Soil Conservation is especially important in rural India, where the erosion of the cultivated fields, ignored pastures and wastelands, considerable roadside erosion to a great extent takes place owing to the defective highway engineering.

Soil Conservation refers to retain extensive vegetation on the soil. Vegetation is the protective cover against the forces of wind and water, which protects the soil from being washed or blown away and preserving the physical and hydrographical balance of nature. Forests, for instance, provide the most effective protection against erosion on hill slopes. They break the force of run-off by impeding the flow of rainwater down the slopes and by absorbing large quantities of it in their dense mat of undergrowth.

Trees are the prime medium of soil conservation; they act as windbreaks, reducing the force of the wind, and the grasses bind the sandy soils. Destruction of trees and natural grasses in dry areas has similar harmful effects. Large areas in the bordering areas of deserts are thus rendered infertile by the deposition of sand. Afforestation and preservation of forests by scientific forest management and improvement of land use practices on farm lands are some more ways of soil conservation practiced in India.

This includes such measures as ploughing along the contours and strip-cropping on sloping lands; proper crop rotations; application of adequate manures and fertilizers; taking care of fallows and other unfarmed lands. Certain engineering measures are also forms of soil conservation. Energy conservation refers to efforts made to reduce energy consumption. Energy conservation can be achieved through increased efficient energy use, in conjunction with decreased energy consumption and/or reduced consumption from conventional energy sources. India’s energy intensity per unit of GDP is about 3. times that of Japan, 1. 4 times that of rest of Asia and 1. 5 times that of USA. It indicates a very high amount of energy wastage and also gives an idea about potential of energy saving that can be achieved. Energy conservation can result in increased financial capital, environmental quality, national security, personal, and human comfort Individuals and organizations that are direct consumers of energy choose to conserve energy to reduce energy costs and promote economic security. Industrial and commercial users can increase energy use efficiency to maximize profit.

Petroleum Conservation Research Association (PCRA) is an Indian government body engaged in promoting energy efficiency and conservation in every walk of life. In the recent past PCRA has done mass media campaigns in television, radio & print media. An impact assessment survey by a third party revealed that due to these mega campaigns by PCRA, overall awareness level have gone up leading to saving of fossil fuels worth crores of rupees besides reducing pollution. Bureau of Energy Efficiency is an Indian governmental organization responsible for promoting energy efficiency and conservation.

Educational programmes on the energy conservation should aim at students in schools and colleges to develop understanding about capabilities, costs and impact of different energy sources and practical aspects of energy such as availability. This should take into account considerations regarding climatic and social conditions of the regions. The students should be encouraged to make proposals to solve the energy problems through experimentation, innovation and holistic approach adapting to local situation.

Awareness about energy conservation and saving in school children of all ages can be brought through education programme that provides a balance between theory and practical aspects through lectures, demonstration, developing hands-on skills through training, and exposure to design and manufacturing. The following concrete steps can be taken in the schools in order to impart awareness of energy conservation among the school children: 1. Include subjects covering energy conservation in the curriculum starting from say fifth standard. 2. Display posters with catchy illustrations and words on the theme of energy conservation 3.

Celebrate Energy Conservation Week once a year in December along with National Energy Conservation Day on 14th December and organize competitions, exhibitions, workshops etc on energy conservation 4. Practice what you preach to drive home the importance of energy conservation in the children’s mind. Apart from this students and other people should also be educated about non-conventional sources of energies. These are hydel power, wind power PRESERVATION OF HERITAGE MONUMENTS India has the pride possession of the cultural heritage in the form of temples, stupas, monoliths, monasteries, etc. some of which are over two thousand years old. These monumental edifices of the past are scattered all round the country in different and sometimes extreme climatic conditions. This cultural history epitomised in heritage monuments stems from a historic past of ancient civilisation. The Taj Mahal, Agra Fort and Fatehpur Sikri in Agra, the Konark Sun Temple, Khajuraho Temples, Mahabalipuram Monuments, Thanjavur, Hampi Monuments as well as the Ajanta, Ellora and Elephanta Caves are some of the monuments declared as World Heritage Monuments.

Being vestiges of the past they have to be protected as per the laws of protection in vogue in the country and have to be well kept and preserved to be handed down to the posterity in the reasonably well preserved conditions. The environmental development of the of the cultural heritage has been of considerable importance, particularly in view of the urbanization of even the remote localities in which such edifices are located. An attempt has therefore been made to deal with the subject with its historical perspective.

It is deemed as criminal offence if someone destroys, removes, injures, alters, defaces, imperils or misuses a protected monument. It is disheartening to note that some people, forgetting that they are doing an irreparable damage to invaluable archaeological masterpieces, inscribe their initials, names, places, addresses or messages on these national treasures. Many a monuments are a victim to these sorts of vandalism. The conservation and protection of these monuments cannot be neglected any further.

Indian Youth comprising of children in schools have a special duty towards raising awareness and protecting the rich cultural heritage which is a part of the glorious history of our country. With a view to sensitize the youth who are the future generation and inculcate in them a healthy value system towards their own heritage, it was decided to observe 12th January as Heritage Day and to administer a heritage oath to entire school community in all recognised schools across India.

It is required to hold poster campaigns to spread awareness among the general population of this situation. In fact a lot of campaigns and other events have been organised in the recent past in favour of this issue. Introduction of strict laws by the government and consciousness among the people are the only ways to prevent defacement of monuments. It is the duty of the Indian people visiting these places to keep in mind that they are destroying and mortifying their nation by this appalling act of vandalism. We exist in this environment. It is our duty to take care of it.

For the sake of progress and development humans have destroyed their mother earth to the extreme, and still are continuing to do so. The current level of eco-awareness is developing, but still not sufficient enough to facilitate the change of environmental conditions for the better. Although many people are aware of the environment and the needs to preserve it, they do not do much to share it with others. This leads to the drop of environmental awareness among the public. One method to counter this is to increase education on the importance of the environment to the public.

Other than holding talks, exhibits and giving out brochures, which often meet lukewarm response, more could be done to integrate into everybody’s work/study life. A company could declare a green day where employees attend a lecture on the importance and some incentives to encourage environmental awareness. Another disturbing fact is that the understanding of environmental awareness was just to be aware. Although it is technically correct, the need for more action is part of being environmentally aware. A way to remedy this through education what the environment means to man.

Moreover the government is not doing enough for the environment. The government should be more receptive to suggestions and the environmental agency or regulatory body be elevated to ministry status. The ministry can then enact laws to promote environmental friendliness of products and prohibit environmental harming acts. The creation and integration of the importance of the environment and environmental knowledge is very important to save the environment. Education is the key to action. So the more educated people are about our environment the more they can endeavour to protect it. Essay by Raktim Pal

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