We’ve got to stop damaging our home, our planet earth


Wherever we live in this world, whatever business we are in, our first priority is to take care of our life-giving ecosystem and the biodiversity that sustains us.

Nothing else on earth matters as much as taking care of our planet.

We have been and are still causing, through our actions, acid rain, smog in our cities, environmental pollution and climate change.

We destroy forests, lakes and rivers; we pollute the air we breathe. We use fertilizers and destroy soil; we pollute water and we emit carbon.

We degrade our forests – we cut down vast expanses of forests and convert and alter habitats from their natural state for so-called development and agriculture.

We are a species threat – killing and reducing our genetic biodiversity, species biodiversity and ecological biodiversity.

We clear wetlands and mangroves to build residential buildings, for salt harvesting, aquaculture, agricultural land, and for harbours docks and industrial zones.

We still are land grabbing, destroying rainforests and abusing human rights.

We are doing this throughout our living planet, unrelentingly, ever since the industrial revolution which we say was the beginning of the Anthropocene age’, the age of man.

We are in the Anthropocene epoch: human-influenced, or anthropogenic, the most recent geologic period in Earth’s history during which human activity causes a substantial impact on our planet.

     We’ve got to change and turn things around. Urgently. We must develop in ourselves an awareness, understanding and consciousness of the fragility of the environment and of the interdependence between the environment and mankind, and our connectedness, co-dependence and co-relatedness with it.

We’ve got to save water. Water is drying up due to competition from various quarters – agriculture, industry, domestic use, drinking and energy generation. This precious natural resource, is drying up. On top of that, we are polluting rivers, streams and the air with industrial wastes. We are eroding wetlands. Water bodies – oceans, rivers, lakes and streams are being polluted with toxic effluents. And we are damming rivers.

     Dams that we build to supposedly create better distribution of water and for power and energy supply, in reality, damns rivers and the entire ecosystem.

When rivers are dammed, water-flow is disturbed and so are the deposits of nutrients. Reduced water-flow affects the riverbed and downstream floodplains, leading to increased flood risk, lower groundwater tables and the accumulation of toxic materials. Entire ecosystems are affected including coastal deltas, which over time, increase salinity and make the water unusable for drinking and irrigation.

Damming also affects the transportation of sediment along the river. Sedimentation build-up in reservoirs reduces a dam’s capacity and operational lifetime.

We must save our oceans too from the release of Industrial effluents and toxic wastes which effect sea creatures near the coast lines and the corals.

Corals are very important to our planet, because they control the carbon dioxide in ocean water. Corals also act as barriers between the ocean and the shore, slowing down strong ocean currents and protecting coastlines.

We must save our wetlands & mangroves – Wetlands are areas such as swamps, marshes and bogs that are filled or soaked with water at least part of the year and are a habitat for a variety of plants, trees, grasses, shrubs or moss and are amongst the most productive ecosystems in the world. Wetlands act like kidneys for other ecosystems. They absorb wind and tidal forces, collect and hold flood waters, and filter, clean and store water.

Mangroves are salt-tolerant plants of tropical and subtropical intertidal regions of the world at the intersection of land and sea, nature has provided a shoreline ecosystem. Mangrove forests play a vital role in trapping sediments, thereby stabilizing coastlines, protecting coral reefs and act as a catalyst in reclaiming land from seas, preventing soil erosion, saving lives and property during natural hazards such as cyclones, storm surges and erosion.

     Forests are sources of water. Forests soak up water like a sponge and conserve, retain and distribute it in the form of rivers and lakes, ponds and aquifers which are our source of fresh, potable water, and, with which nature renews itself and keeps the ecology in balance. Yet we cut down forests systematically destroying Earth’s natural ecosystems bit by bit.

     The web of life Everything is connected. We are all part of what is called the web of life. All of us humans, animals and everything in nature are closely connected and co-dependent on each other, we are co-dependent and interdependent on the lives of various creatures on earth.

     The solution – We must realize that we are not separate, individual people who exist in isolation from our world, from animals, and from the abundant biodiversity that sustains us.

      We must realise that Earth is not a resource for humans, and resources, whatever they may be, are not inexhaustible. They are finite.       

We must be mindful of the impact of human interactions and its effect on biodiversity that surrounds us and learn to be aware of our impact on our soils, forests, fresh water, atmosphere and oceans.

     We must eschew the belief that human beings have a higher moral status, superior intelligence or a ‘value’ higher than that of other creatures on the planet.

We must stop our consumption-induced environmental degradation, as conspicuous consumption/consumerism has major environmental impacts and is not ecologically sustainable

It is never too early to learn to live in peace. As indigenous activist for rights, climate action, and human rights. Mita Xipaya, from Altamira, Brazil says, “We are all from the same Earth, from the same world. And all of us have the responsibility to take care of our planet. We cannot dream of a future if we cannot guarantee a present”

Pratap Antony is a Passive activist. Active pacifist freelance thinker and writer. Writes on ecology and environment, social justice and pluralism, management ideas and issues and music: western classical, jazz, and Indian classical dance.


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