I was going to the bank and was generally chatting with my autowallah. When we stopped in a signal, he looked outside, up at the sky and said -"baarish hone ko maanga hai" (it gotta rain)
And we were always worried about how our kids would suffer because of global warming and I am realizing that it is happening in our lifetime itself - infact in the lifetime of our parents. Reading reports and seeing documentaries weren't the only source of my concern. I see that most of India is under drought. I can experience the climate change first hand. Most of us can. It was never supposed to snow in Seattle and now we have snow-storms. Nashik, two years ago in this time of the year used to have plenty of rains. I remember getting totally drenched when chandana visited me and this year there have only been a few half-hearted drizzles.
If things weren't scary enough, I saw a documentary on history on mesopotamia where they predicted the end of the world in 2012 (a ballpark) and they predict it from drowning.
I really hope that govt across the world take approriate steps to mitigate it to certain extent. In one of the reports I read - the US was the worst culprit emitting most of the green house gases (I will state the numbers once I get back to Mumbai - yes I am still in Nashik). Europeans were smarter and embraced public transport and green environment better. Infact if China and India also develop along the same lines as US then the earth will not be able to take so much of pollution.
I mentioned this to one of the guys who said, "well what can I do ? I really do not have time to hold a placcard and ask people to change." Well, no one is asking to change the world. But then do I - as an individual want to be part of the problem or part of the solution?
I kinda realized that I want to be part of the solution. So here is what I am planning to do and have already started:
1) Plastic bags are a strict no-no. I don't use them (besides they don't look pretty). And if some shop like shopper's stop gives them to me then I take it and use it again and again and again - I carry it everywhere instead of aasking fo new ones. In future I am gonna refuse those plastic bags totally and in further future maybe yell at them for using them and not providing greener solutions.
2) Public transport is yes :). Ok ok I am guilty here I recently purchased a car and will probably be going to whistling woods in the car as it is so far off from home and also the train stations are far away. But in the longer term I am gonna explore the possiblity of using th trains, or maybe carpool and best is move closer to it so that I do not have to travel so much. As it is Saurabh uses trains exclusively.
3) Save electricity. Turn off lights, fans.
4) Save water - minimize bubble baths and al those fancy things. I am waiting for drinking water to get costlier than petrol one day and I badly hope that I am wrong. But few years ago the concept of buying water was unheard of. Incidentally in my visit to Singapore, when I was reading the local newspaper I realized that shortage of drinking water is one of the topmost problem being faced and they are investing hugely in reasearch to convert seawater to drinking water and they are seeing some success.
5) Vote for a government that is more aware of these issues, have literates who understand the gravity of the issue and plan the cities so that there is good public transport. I can only be optimistic here.
6) There are lots of folks who donot understand global warming. Just let them know what it is.
7) Alternative energy sources - if I have to invest I would invest in them (if I had money that is :))
The poorest of the poor and richest of the rich share the same sky, same sea, same earth. In a world where we all are partitioned because of so many reasons let's not ruin one thing that unites all of us.