Posts Tagged ‘ Earth ’

“Green Economy: Does it include YOU?” – The best WED theme ever

5th June 2012

Today, UNEP is celebrating World Environment day with the theme “Green Economy: Does it include YOU?” With Rio +20 just around the corner “Green Economy “ has been hanging on every environment website, related agendas,  news, blogs, programs and proposals for months now and UNEP’s WED theme just drove it home, into our skin.

If we look closely, the words “Green” and “Economy” have been conflicting with each other, ever since mankind woke up from its deep ignorant sleep, one fine morning of industrial age and realized that it has been messing up with earth all the while. Since then, the world has been divided into two schools of thoughts: one who believes in “economic development at all costs” and the other who believes “earth is being trashed up for economy. “  Developers didn’t want to compromise with development and kept on trashing the earth while the latter kept holding placards of “sustainable development” to stop reckless development but helplessly watched the deteriorating tragedy of earth.

And then the recession around the world changed it all. Because the recession made the developers think of the flaws and constraints of the economic model and made them think why the model for reckless economic development failed. And the answer had been there all the while in the placards; the economy failed because it was not sustainable. The economy failed because the environment and sustainable issues had been disregarded from the economic development. Then, the two words which had been conflicting for decades were brought together as “Green Economy”. Continue reading

What I do :)

15th April 2012
During Avrudu, I was lucky enough to observe the Sri Lankan New Year customs and delicacies with Sri Lankan families themselves. During one such gathering, a small girl came to me and asked me what I was doing here. Her bad English and my bad Sinhala were not going very well; nevertheless I was trying to explain what I do here. But one cannot get technical with a 6 year old girl and say all those hi-fi words Air Quality management and Vehicle Emission Testing and stuff now, can we? So, I said that I clean air. “Clean Air?”, she mused, eyes big. I could see her wrinkling her nose. Maybe she was having visions of me taking a broom and dusting off air. “Why?” came the next question. I could have said “You’ll understand when you grow up” a phrase all of us have heard many times while growing up, but I didn’t want to. So, this is how I tried explaining, as simply as I could manage:

“Air is invisible. We cannot see air, but we can fill it. It is like a blanket, wrapping us moving here and there. We breathe it in and we breathe it out from our nose. Even other animals do, some through their skin. Plants also breathe through their leaves. We, humans breathe in about 700,000 cubic inches of air everyday but with Industrialization, transport and rapid motorization and other anthropogenic causes; we are polluting air and pumping more toxic into it; through stacks of industries, through tailpipes and at a certain level through our stoves as well.” There, she winkled her nose again. Then, I had to say “When we cook, smoke comes out, when we ride a car, smoke comes out, when we have big factories smoke comes out. But these smokes remain in our air. They don’t belong in air but they remain there for a long time. These toxics we have added to air, and are still adding will also be breathed by our lungs, processed in our body and will pose serious health hazards to us, humans along with other living beings because they are like small small toxic, poisons, they make you sick in the end and also cause environmental complications; which can effect local air quality as well as contribute in global climate change. So, it’s a bad thing. Not good for you, me or you dog. Bad for your garden and bad for other countries like America too.” “What about Uk? My uncle is there?” she asked. “Yes, bad for UK as well”, I said, trying hard to suppress a smile. Continue reading