Sunday, 20 October 2019

Glimmer of Hope

If you are well versed with the research on climate change, all of it seems hopeless. Human interference, in the last century has driven 1 million species to extinction or near extinction. We have already killed 60% of the planet's wildlife.

The planet is already 1 degree celsius hotter than late 19th century. And the temperature is rapidly rising. Most of the warming happened in the last 49 years or so. Scientists say by 2050 the arctic regions are estimated to be largely free of ice in the summer, leading to rise in sea level creating many tsunamis and mayhem.

How are we to stop all this damage, forget reversing the damage already caused? But I see a glimmering hope at the end of this dark tunnel. In the recent times, Six million people have participated in the climate strike organized by Greta Thunberg and FridaysForFuture group. The strike was to demand urgent action on the escalating ecological emergency. It was the biggest ever climate mobilization till date.

Canada has created an Arctic zone almost as big as Germany to protect its sea birds, polar bears and whales. Ethiopia has planted 2.6 billion trees in just over two months. Egypt is building Africa's first "Vertical Forest" with 14,000 plants and 350 trees. Costa Rica plans to be the first plastic free and carbon free country by 2021.

Not just countries but even individuals are making great progress to help the environment. Fionn Ferreira made an invention to remove microplastics from water. Scientists have created biodegradable plastic from cactus juice and even orange peel. A blind man and his double amputee friend have worked for 10 years to plant over 10,000 trees. Jadav Payeng (forest man of India) has built a forest of 550 hectares, leading to return of wildlife.

All of these actions give me a glimmer of hope, to keep fighting, to keep talking, to keep changing one habit, one person at a time.

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