Yesterday, when I was waiting at Texins for one my friends to turn up so that we could play TT, I came across this magazine called Down To Earth. It was a magazine brought out by the Center for Science and Environment and it is about the environmental threats facing India. It was one of the most informative magazines that I have read in quite a while.
That particular issue which was last month’s, I think, had articles about the problem of falling groundwater level in various parts of India, farmer suicides, female hygiene in rural areas, increasing acidity of oceans, construction of various plants and the protests they triggered etc.. Reading it was a little depressing. Especially the articles about the plight of farmers. The falling water levels and the increasing desperation with which new bore-wells are sunk to ever increasing depths is very distressing news. More than the current state, what really makes you feel bad is the seeming hopelessness of the situation. With climate change and the decreasing and/or unpredictable rainfall that it has caused in some areas combined with the inability of the state to provide proper irrigation facilities is what is said to have caused the above crisis.
Farmers don’t see any other way out, other than sink new wells. When they fail, they keep trying again and again. Finally, when their last desperate attempt fails, they resort to suicide. If you try to dwell on it, this article effects you deeply.
Reading it reminded me of a video called Home that I had seen while I was in college. It was about how the earth was being exploited in unsustainable ways and how most of our “amazing” ideas are incredibly short-sighted and destructive. That was a pretty well-done video with stunning scenes and a powerful narrative.
The online version of DTE also has some great galleries. There was this one about Waste Mismanagement that I found interesting. Reading about all this makes one realize that we owe a lot, first to our planet and then to our country. I don’t really know what I can do now about these things. But there must be some way in which everyone can contribute.