World Environment Day today

Saadia Salahuddin
Sunday, Jun 05, 2022

LAHORE : The climate has undergone immense change in several countries during recent years. In this part of world, summer arrives early and its duration has increased considerably.

The water table has also gone down substantially. There is talk of rationing of water for it comes out of the mother earth and is not man-made. Our current consumption of renewable resources is 1.7 times greater than what the earth can sustain.

The World Environment Day is observed across the world on June 5 and this year the theme is ‘Get involved #OnlyOneEarth’. The rapidly changed climatic scenario expected from all of us to contribute our share in improving the environment in our surroundings.

The boom in the automobile industry has doubled or perhaps tripled the number of vehicles in our country where public transport system is inadequate. At World Economic Forum that concluded last week, the experts proposed a four-day work week. They argued this will reduce vehicles on roads, there will be less fuel consumption and this will not affect productivity. There has been much talk about car pool to schools and offices but we have not been able to practically do that in the city. In March 2020, the life came to a standstill in Lahore due to Covid-19, so much so that public transport went off-road, not even rickshaws were there. Everyone was working from home. That was when people realized that they can work from home. That saves fuel and the effort to go to work. There are offices that wear haunted look, with sparse attendance. The world saw and recognized that fewer vehicles on roads improved the air quality. We started living in a cleaner environment but roads are again flooded with vehicles immediately after controlling Covid-19.

There are industrial estates now in Lahore and factories have moved there from residential areas. Things have improved over time in this respect. Still, we have depleted out natural resources such as water and gas with injudicious use. We are turning our fields where we would plant crops, into housing societies. We are eating up our green belts, filling concrete in the lungs of the city.

All improvements have to start from self and charity begins at home. This calls for stop washing our courtyard, car porch and cars because we are short of water. Much less water is used when we take shower as compared to when we take a bath with bucket, so use shower. There is need to devise ways to save rain water, also to recycle water to water fields, wash cars and clothes. Rationing water and gas will cause discomfort but by using them responsibly, we will be able to save water and gas for the future generations. We need to change the way we live.