The Earth is a unique planet because it has a species called ‘humans’ living on it. We all are aware of the words ‘global warming’, and ‘climate change’, but they reach the back of our minds within no time. But the reverse can also happen. Within no time, my ignorance about a LOT of things has now transformed into awareness. I’d like to share this awareness here because I believe that knowledge must be shared, as much as possible. It leads to creation of more knowledge. This one is dedicated to a dedicated environmentalist, and most of all, an extremely distinguished, humble, amiable and honest Professor. He definitely managed to turn many of his Indian students into environmentalists and maybe, future climate negotiators. He achieved all this within a short span of two weeks. I believe he would only be glad to know about this propagation of information, because he himself has been extremely generous with broadening our minds. He made us realise that we need to save the planet which is unique only because of our existence. The existence of LIFE. And if we don’t make an effort, who else will? We are a specialized species, we are called ‘homo sapiens’, and we’re equipped with the brains and the heart to turn around the world and make the rest of the living (and non-living) beings as comfortable as we are (or want to be). The Blue Planet belongs to EVERYBODY who has been chosen by Mother Earth to inhabit it. But as the most advanced species, we owe our service to the world. It’s a huge responsibility, but one that can make our lives seem significant in the face of a slow-moving apocalypse. It’s our duty to catch the bull by the horns, in order to protect it.
So here are some facts straight out of what I’d like to call ‘Lectures, Interactions, (and even Mock Climate Negotiations) on International Environmental Law’.
I solemnly swear that I was not aware of the following: (Brownie points to you if you did!)
1. 60 percent of the cocoa that goes into making the delicious chocolates that we eat is the result of the hardwork put in the plantations by boy-slaves, aged anywhere between 9 and 13 years. They are torture, whipped and fed poorly. And you thought slavery had been abolished?
2. 20 percent of world’s freshwater is accounted for by Lake Baikal in Siberia.
3. Those cute polar bears can travel upto 200 miles simply hopping on ice blocks. Melting of ice poses a serious threat to their existence, considering that they cannot swim, and evolution does not happen overnight. It is based on the principle of ‘survival of the fittest’.
4. The genitals of tigers are made use of in certain parts of Asia to make medicines that would make men more virile. That’s because apparently men are extremely insecure about their sexuality. The issue is not the preparation of medicines, it is the fact that the desire for virility has led to the hunt for tigers. Poaching is more rampant than anyone thinks. Stats? (At this moment) There are about 1200 Bengal tigers, and about 200 Siberian tigers in the world.
5. The Anopheles mosquito (the carrier of the disease Malaria) are gradually moving towards the higher latitudes, as the earth is becoming warmer, and this mosquito thrives in warmer temperatures.
6. The plant cannabis (more widely known as Marijuana) is also used to make Hemp, which can be used as a substitute in place of cutting trees for paper pulp and printing. Ditto for Kenaf, which is again a water substitute (It is a natural fibre and can be used for a variety of purposes which otherwise make use of widespread deforestation).
7. If more freshwater is brought to the Gulf Stream, then England may soon be on the same latitude as Labrador.
I am omitting to mention a lot of other interesting facts, because this is a public space and if I type more, I may end up blatantly and unabashedly putting out the truth about the ulterior motives of many ‘civilized’ nations. Environmental issues are best solved when free of politics. All the abovementioned info is just the tip of the iceberg. After all, only one-tenth of an iceberg floats on the surface.