Mother Nature or the Fallen Sister
Nature, our fragile environment has been the abode of life for man since times immemorial. Not forgetting that the first things laid out in this planet earth were the two whore words, light and dark i.e. day and night. Nature, the words which whore the admirations of many philosophers also laments touches of sanity and even divine-hood. We revere it so much that we call her generously and respectfully ‘Mother nature', giving the sovereign title of ‘Mother-The abode of man'. However, is it really worthwhile to call nature our mother? Does she possess the right and privilege to be the ‘mother' for us? Has she cradled and lapped you gently on her laps and rock you forth with joy? Or are you struggling to say so because you feel you existed for nature and not the other way around? Think again, you're going to feel the pinch...
The challenge of waste
Human induced solid waste (or, garbage) and its proper and effective disposal has always baffled mankind. Before 1950s, garbage was never a problem, especially in rural India, which was collected for on-farm composting. However, now, we go for incineration, bio-composting, biomethanation etc to clear our debris and garbage. What about e-waste? E-waste is now one of the fastest growing waste streams, with people changing their computers, television sets and mobile phones more frequently than ever before. According to an estimate, about 20-50 million tonnes of e-waste is being generated annually worldwide. In India, the figure stands at nearly 4 lakh tonnes a year. With the growing IT infrastructure and more reliance on sophisticated gadgets, the problem is doomed to take more toll. Let's see the more hazardous yet easily ignored waste, biomedical waste and its refuse. Considered next only to radioactive waste in its hazardousness, safe disposal of hospital wastes and medical tissues has baffled many governments. Although rules for management of biomedical wastes are notified and clear to all states, compliance of these laws is low in most states. Compliance and infrastructure building, coupled with evolution of standard protocols based on higher level recommendations need to be studied and adopted. So why, why do we trouble ourselves with such giants? Is it solely our mistake? Why doesn't ‘mother' nature dispose off all our wastes at the moment it reaches her? Has she lost her capacity to rejuvenate? Has she lost her love for us?
The concept of ‘All round development' so as to speak of, utilizing our resources in a manner compatible to present and future use. However, our modern concept of the term has paradoxed the very existence and potential harvest of sustainable regimes we now widely emphasise. Lets have a look.
First, Biofuels. The lexicon of today's generation, the all power to save our planet from the threatening climate change. We go so far to say that bio/agrofuels are the ultimatum for saving our energy crisis and potential harmful paradigm shift in climate. However from expert's prediction, if agrofuels are to drive all Indian vehicles, we need 3 mt of grains/day which is adequate to feed 120 million PDS (Public distribution system) families a month. To fuel all the automobiles in the country, we have to convert into agrofuels all the grains that would otherwise go to feed the billion-plus population annually!
Next, thought on Urban development. The so called ‘sustainable/green buildings', widely acclaimed as a potential minimization to visible evidence of environmental damage and rising fuel prices. Use of recycled waste materials, locally available and natural building materials are sought for to reduce the energy profile of buildings. Oh, mother nature, rejuvenate thee!
Wildlife. Our so called wild biota. I am of the view of our late Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, who clearly lamented the plight of wildlife today. Our wild tigers, doomed to destruction because our needs and tastes don't coincide. What to say for our very own, mighty and unconquerable Gir lions? What lies ahead? Leopards, we lose them out to people. Today, endless and often nameless extinctions occur everyday. Why can't mother nature take them into her fold and protect them? Is she losing her capacity to love and care for these innocent animals? Is she also doomed to destruction?
Climate change. You know it better. Our consumption, equity and carbon thrift, possible harvest of solar power, the possible impacts of climate change on our coral reefs and the possible role of aerosols? Many things to discuss...
Our earth, the sole planet where life thrives. Mother Nature, the sole caretaker of all divine life forms. From the most intelligent but haphazard mankind to the simplest but noblest life forms of minute organisms, nature has cradled life since the beginning. From the creationist viewpoint, life on earth was heaven before. Due to our own separation from God, man separated and sinned against God. His eternal reward was taken away because he was now lost in the sight of God. He lost all his possessions as a son. The world shook the day man cried, the earth lost her desire to self rejuvenate because she lost her very own son, man. Nature was inconsolable because man was her best friend. But how can she go back to him? He had left her and sinned against her father, God. That was the world before. Nature is not our mother. She is just our sister, the sister who too got separated from God, because of the sin which our forefathers committed, which eternally broke the passage with the divine, claiming us as fallen. Nature too, she's our fallen sister!