Every year, a certain day is dedicated and observed as “World Environment Day” throughout the world. The irony, however is that it would not be far from the truth to say that everybody is feeling the consequences of the damages man has inflicted on the environment right this very minute. But the uncomfortable truth is that unless we start doing something concrete to reverse- if possible, or contain the damage, the rise in temperature and the consequent disruptions in the natural climatic cycle will continue at an increased rate. That is not a very rosy picture, and yet precious little has been done on the ground to slow the ravages of man on our ecosystem. There is bound to be a conflict of interest between conservation of environment and development as has been witnessed countless times before, an inevitable crossing of paths arising out of necessity. But such conflicts need not result in disaster or damages though that has been the case so far. All it needs is proper understanding and earnest effort to bring about a cohesive system where nature and environment can be integrated into the developing world. It has now become a chick or “the in thing” to flaunt one’s eco-friendly lifestyles. This says a lot for the changing mindset towards our environments- a welcome change for sure, compared to the wanton destruction of forests and natural greeneries a few years earlier to make way for concrete structures and artificial jungles of concrete and glass.
But the most emergent question everybody needs to be asking at the moment is: is dedicating a single day of the year to reaffirm our commitment and responsibilities towards our environment enough to make the necessary and desired changes? The answer couldn’t be any clearer. This year, we have witnessed and experienced one of the worst floods in recent years, and the more relevant point that needs to be looked into is the frequency of the disaster. As of today, we have experienced flood situations at least four times in the state, the most recent one wreaking havoc at Senapati District, destroying, among others, an orphanage and leaving the kids with just the clothes on their backs.
The effects of the wrath of nature cannot be stressed enough. While it would not be possible or practical to expect the government to set things right and make plans to ensure that such calamities does not occur, there are areas where the government, both at the central and the state level, can look into and take up concrete steps to minimize the effects and contain the damage. Yet whatever has been done so far by way of any and every efforts towards addressing the issues, almost all of them turned out to be just another excuse by the contractors, engineers and others involved in the process to serve their own self-interests. The need of the hour, on the other hand, should be to implement a consistent plan to help nature and our environment to heal. This will undoubtedly prove easier said than done, but greater challenges have been successfully met and overcame with cooperation, dedication, a sense of purpose and resilience.
Meanwhile, making informed judgment by everyone of us, in the way we choose eco-friendly products and organic foods that does not contaminate the soil and water, to that of choosing things which are made locally instead of the ones that has been flown halfway around the world, as also inculcating a more evolved civic sense could make a much bigger and significant difference than we think possible.