After the Cold War, Cancer, Aids, Osama, one of the latest global Phenomena floating around, blowing vast amounts of hot and cold air is Environmentalism. Like all other earlier Global Phenomena, there is of course enormous amounts of money to be made from this Cause by various lobbies. India too is off the mark pretty quick, quite overlooking the fact that our so-called “Great Indian Heritage” has, for eons, propagated environmentalism in the form of innumerable rituals and festivals, apart from the fact that our economy has eternally been pegged on recycling in any and every form, from the raddiwalla to age old customs of homemade ghee etc.
All the hot air blowing over whether or not the Himalayan glaciers are melting or not and if they are, at what rate at they melting overlooks one key issue: that this is all perhaps part and parcel of the inevitable evolution of Planet Earth.
Since early school years, we have been taught about evolution. Nowhere did the books mention that that evolution has been stopped after the last of the Ice Ages. Yet nowhere in the reams of print being devoted to environmental disaster issues does one find any mention of the possibility of currently visible environmental changes being perhaps on account of Evolution.
What after all is the central issue of environmentalism? Is it the environment as we have grown up knowing it, to be preserved at all costs, irrespective of the preservation of Man, or of factors of the ongoing evolution of the Earth?
Any change in temperature, in atmospheric dust etc has environmentalists up in arms, spewing as much brim and fire as the volcanoes which spew out the heat of the Earth and its womb’s dust.
Contradicting the doomsayers, studies have indicated that the periodic spewing of fire and dust into the atmosphere by volcanoes has a positive fall out in that it forms a heat screen against the rays of the Sun. Age old solidified broken down volcanic material form some prized farmlands.
Environmentalists make a great hue and cry about various development projects to be located in what are termed “ecologically sensitive areas”. Would such experts kindly demarcate on a map of the world the areas which are not ecologically sensitive and can safely house any new development projects with its inevitable pollution and consumption of natural resources?
Meanwhile it devolves on each of us to conserve the environment with simple changes in lifestyle to minimize wastage of natural resources. For:
We are birds of the same nest,
We may wear different skins,
We may speak different languages,
We may believe in different religions,
We may belong to different cultures,
Yet we share the same home – our Earth.
For man can live individually
But can survive only collectively
Born on the same planet
Covered by the same skies
Gazing at the same stars
Breathing the same air
We must learn to happily progress together
Or miserably perish together.
- From the Atharva Veda