As we observed the World Environment Day on June 5, we need to remember that every day has to be dedicated in saving and sustaining the environment . This year the UN is urging for an economic restoration. Reimagine, Recreate and Restore was the theme of this day. It’s all about starting with those little additions and deductions in our daily life to kick start a change towards a better tomorrow.
CHANGE BEGINS AT HOME
Changing small details in our household can collectively make a huge impact; simple things like rethinking lighting of the house to managing waste. Rajneesh Sareen, Programme Director, Sustainable Habitat, CSE, explains, “One should try reducing unnecessary use of energy, if you are performing a task, use a lamp instead of using all the lights in the room. Use natural light as much as possible. Besides saving electricity, natural light helps people being more active, productive, healthier, calmer and acts as a mood enhancer. Encouraging natural ventilation in your home is healthy and light on pocket. In a post Covid world, ventilated spaces will be of paramount importance.”
Apart from that, even fruits and vegetables that we consume should be bought with a little thought put in that purchase. Sareen states that, “buying local and seasonal fruits or vegetables is the best way of consumption”. “Seasonal fruits and vegetables have more nutrients, taste better, have lesser doses of pesticides and smaller carbon footprint than non seasonal ones.”.
WASTE MANAGEMENT IS THE KEY
Carbon footprint can also be considerably reduced with proper waste management –managing waste in Indian households is both easy and efficient. “There is no waste in nature, waste is a man-made concept. All of us need to take environment pollution seriously, and take waste as an asset. Then only will things change.” urges recycle man of India Binish Desai.
Therefore, reimagining the resources at our disposal will considerably help reduce waste generation. “With a population of 1.39 billion, if every household can make some small changes towards a sustainable living, it can bring about a great change,” says Desai. He suggests people to learn about waste segregation into dry and wet waste, understand and practice recycling to the fullest, adopt a minimalist lifestyle with only buying things that you need, DIY waste products into home décor, shop local or from sustainable small businesses, avoid using single use plastic and more.
Not only the waste we produce, but, clothing makes for a major part of how we live and impact the environment around us. One can become a hoarder without even realising. For sustainable fashion designer Sreyashi Raka Das, thinking about what we wear is very important, as it directly affects the environment. “It starts from thinking why we are wearing clothes; ideally, it should be an amalgamation of necessity and art. Choosing natural fabrics that comes from nature, and are not entirely man-made can be a good way to start. Wearing recycled clothes is also a great initiative to be environmentally conscious.”
Condemning no-repeat culture, Raka Das adds, “Recycled as well as second hand clothes should not be looked down upon.” Thrifting is not only pocket friendly but also good for the environment, you are giving new life to an old piece. “Recreate looks with pieces that you already own, don’t become a hoarder in a Buy 1, get 1 free world,” she concludes.