Let me start this small article by wishing all a very happy and self-realizing World environment Day 2022.
1972 Stockholm Conference with â€œOnly One Earthâ€ Slogan was the very first truly international attempt to bring all nations on one platform as far as environment is concerned and fifty years later this slogan still holds true as so far this is the only home for us. The only One Earth theme emphasizes on Climate Action, Nature Action, and Pollution Action.
There can be many aspects or interpretations of this theme as â€œthis is the only home for usâ€ or â€œEarth is the only living planet in the universeâ€ or â€œConsidering Earth as a single entity for survivalâ€. In all interpretations, message is only one that â€œWe must be awakened towards the protection of environment for our own survivalâ€. We can always imagine, without getting into religions, that someone, call it nature or Creator, has beautifully painted on the canvas of Space a very lively picture of our earth out of energy and material (Natural Resources), using Triguna such as unique Environment, Natural environmental actions and reactions, and flora and Fauna including Human Beings (Satva, Raj, and Tam), the man being the most tamasi but intelligent creature.
Whatever it is, this earth is healthy if all its components or elements are in balance or equilibrium, like a human being is good and healthy if he has proper balance of trigunas. However, the most equilibrium perturbing actions are initiated by Human beings through its intellectual capabilities that lead to disasters every now and then. One has to realize that disasters are kind of reactions that earth or nature is imposing to reset the equilibrium. In a process we are destroying our own and only home and slowly bringing misery to ourselves. What human beings do? We do many unwanted activities in undesirable ways out of extreme greed for materials, comforts, power, and exercise control over everything. Nature allows limited exploitation of itself provided one is in the equilibrium, however, we think and act for million tons of products exploiting natural resources , adopting rapid processes, and leading inassimilable types and quantum of wastes, which ultimately induce nature to react in disastrous way we even do not think of. Climate change, depleting natural resources, and increasing waste management problems are the most evident and potential disasters we are facing today. Way out is simple but needs contribution from all. It prescribes judicious and sustainable use of natural resources like water, land and earth itself, well planned and sustainable practices, and Waste minimization, utilization, for which we need to develop climate, nature, and pollution consciousness. We must minimize use and wastage of water, energy, land and we must manage our wastes sincerely as you are not the only one owner of this earth. It is one and only one home for all. This has to be adopted by one and all. This needs discipline at all levels starting from oneself. Let all individuals pledge that â€œI will minimize the use and wastage of natural resources with only one earth consciousnessâ€.
This has been preached in all our ancient texts as â€œHe Vishwachi maze Gharâ€. Upnishadas, in a way, preach that one shall not realize Bramha without identifying oneness of nature and him. Let us put all efforts to understand and realize this Only One Earth.
Dr Atul Vaidya
Director CSIR NEERI, Nagpur