Firstly, I want to thank everyone who has read my first post. I received a lot of messages of support. It was very overwhelming and I just want to thank everyone from the bottom of my heart. The encouragement people gave me was absolutely mind-blowing and I will try my best to write good stuff from time to time. Thank you again for the support.
” The question is, are we happy to suppose that our grandchildren may never be able to see an elephant except in a picture book? ”
Sir David Attenborough
Over the past few days, I was watching this documentary on Netflix called “Our Planet”. This was narrated by Sir David Attenborough, fondly called as Britain’s national treasure. Watching this show was an eye opener to me. It showed all kinds of wildlife all over the world and how they survive amongst themselves. It was beautifully shown with Sir David’s voice the cherry on the top. The message of the documentary was very clear. We need to change if we want to protect our flora and fauna.
“Scientists estimate we are now losing species at 1,000 to 10,000 times the background rate, with literally dozens going extinct every day. It could be a scary future indeed, with as many as 30 to 50 percent of all species possibly heading toward extinction by mid-century” –
I always wondered why I loved watching animals. Watching an animal brings some kind of unexplained happiness. Animals that are even rare to watch bring even more joy when we catch just a small glimpse of them. The reason always evaded me but I couldn’t care less why. Remember the good old days of packing a big lunch and going to the zoo ? These days when I go, I always feel that I see less animals than before. I just assumed that there were less animals in the cages and more were free out in the wild. That was far from it. The bitter truth is that the population of animals is suffering. Why is this happening ? This has started to occur as recently as the 20th century. Did you know what happened between in 20th century ? My best bet would be population explosion and industrialisation. Animals don’t need many things to survive unlike us humans. Most of them just need food, a mate and shelter to survive. Animals are supposed to get eaten too. That’s all part of the food web which maintains that intricate balance. But you know what disturbed this balance ? Good ol’ humans. We are indirectly causing the suffering and the inevitable decline of thousands of species. Sir David did say one thing that is still in my head. It’s ISN’T too late to change ourselves. We can see massive results in a short duration of time even if we take small steps.
I’m sure all of you know plastic is bad. But do you know why is it bad for wildlife ? Plastic should actually be recycled but the sad truth is that there is too much to recycle it. The rest of the plastic is dumped in water bodies. So, the wildlife which lives in the oceans and other water bodies ingest the plastic which is lethal to the marine wildlife. Plastic materials which are floating in the water also make it hard for the dissolved oxygen to penetrate into the water. So the animals can’t breathe and because of this the survival becomes a lot more difficult.
You know that the fish or any seafood we cook and eat may NOT be safe at all. What if a fish ate some minute amount of plastic and then a fisherman caught the fish and sold it to the local market. Then you go buy the fish and cook it and eat it. The plastic in there was so little that even if we clean it thoroughly, it going to be highly unlikely to get rid of it all. So we eat the fish thinking it was clean but we also ate some plastic as well. Now imagine this happened on a regular basis. So ultimately the humans are ingesting plastic which is bad for us as well.
The plastic also affects land animals. Some people dump plastic on the ground. Stray animals try to the eat it because the plastic is usually some kind of foot item. They eat whatever little food is left over but also eat a whole lot of plastic. That is terrible for them. It can get stuck in their intestines causing blockade, the plastic can get stuck on the wings of birds not enabling them fly properly or can get stuck on the legs of animals which make them more difficult to escape their predator.
I genuinely think that by single handedly reducing the use of plastic, we can make a huge difference in preserving the wildlife. I want to share some basic hacks that can actually cut some significant chuck of plastic from our daily use.
- When I go shopping, I always try to carry my own bags. Whether I’m shopping at Spencers, More etc bringing my own bag actually means I don’t have to take a plastic bag from the supermarket. They have also started charging for the bags so more people try to save money by bringing their own bags. Replace plastic bags with jute bags/cloth bags/paper bags which are way more eco friendly.
- Say NO to straws. They are tall and sharp. They are very very toxic because they can very easily get stuck in the throats of animals.
- Stop buying plastic water bottles, soda, soft drinks and other sugary drinks because not only are they plastic material but also bad for our health. Bring your own reusable non plastic water bottle.
- Request your online retailer like Amazon, Flipkart etc to hold back on the overzealous packaging of air filled plastic bags for books and other small items.
- Go Digital. I think these days most of us have got high speed internet. And if you do, start streaming with Netflix, Hotstar, Prime Video etc instead of buying discs.
These are just few simple changes if done for a significant period of time will definitely make some positive impact on the environment and the wildlife. I want everyone who are reading this to try and reduce our plastic footprint by adopting some of the ways described above. I also request you to share any other ways we can reduce the plastic use by giving a comment. Small changes when done a large scale can have the biggest impact on the environment. Always remember the 3 R’s – Reduce, Reuse and Recycle.
Please watch the documentary “Our Planet” which is currently streaming on Netflix worldwide. Sir David narrates what I believe is a masterpiece.
I want to end by saying that it’s never too late. I am going to try my best to reduce my plastic footprint and so should you. Let’s take baby steps in making a significant change for a better planet and a better future. Thank you.