It is an absolute pleasure to welcome one our of very own volunteers and environmenal supporters, Adelaide Musemesi, to the trading post today. With a heart as big as the seas she helps us to think about resetting ourselves during and after the covid-19 crisis. So make a cuppa and take 5 minutes to see how you can be part of the change!
As a nation, we have been under lockdown for almost 2 months now and with the 5-level system, we might still be under lockdown for a while longer. This gives us time to think about a lot of things, particularly about how we can make a change for Mother Earth.
There have been reports of Mother Earth healing in various ways because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Greenhouse gas emissions decreasing in China, canals becoming clearer in Italy, blue skies in Delhi, the snow-covered Himalayas mountains can be seen from rooftops in India, mobs of monkeys and deer are roaming streets now devoid of tourists in Thailand and Japan and some beaches are cleaner as we can see here in Port Elizabeth.
These reports show us that we have been causing damage to the environment and our reduced movements and activity have been slowly undoing this damage. Once the lockdown is over, we will go back to our normal daily activities and the very little healing that had happened will be undone and we will be back on our accelerated path of damaging the environment. At the moment, we are mostly not actively trying to protect the environment. The healing that is occurring is due to a forced decrease in activity. We need to make a conscious effort to protect our environment post lockdown.
So, what can we do? How do we prevent this from happening? Take some time to think about your normal day to day activities, how you carried them out and if they were hurting the environment or saving it. Then think about what you can do differently in your day to day activities to reduce the negative impacts we humans have on the environment post lockdown and you can start practicing now so it becomes a lifestyle.
Some ideas of things you can do include the following:
These are just a few suggestions and there are many more that you can find on the internet. Yes, there are some activities that we will not be able to change in an effort to reduce our negative impact on the environment, but you will be surprised at how all these small efforts, if all combined, can make such a massive difference. And it doesn't have to be a burden, it can become a lifestyle and something to enjoy for you, your family, friends and community. As an individual or a family, you can save the environment by adjusting your day to day activities; as a business, you can ensure your business practices and/or manufacturing is eco-friendly and as a government, stringent environmental policies can be put in place and enforced. A few countries have taken this route, e.g. Sweden, and they have been successful at it.
"Umntu Ngumntu Ngabantu" comes into play. "I am because we are". This applies in the environmental context as well. By not playing our part in protecting the environment, we will not be thinking of our neighbour and the people around us. Let's each take responsibility in any way we can for the sake of our environment, those around us and the future generations to come so they can also experience Earth’s abundance and greatness the way we have.
Change starts with you! Be the change that mother earth needs today!