“Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.”Albert Einstein
What thoughts would have crossed to one of the brightest minds ever when he’d have said this quote? Perhaps he was referring more than what it really seems.
I must say I am feeling very thoughtful of a lot of things these days. I look into nature, more than I am required and I will tell you with affirmation – nature’s a healer. But what we have done to mother nature is no more tolerable. Climate change is real and we are all responsible.
There is No Planet B, Not Yet
Space is harsh and what makes our planet habitable is the ATMOSPHERE. Without it, we’d have drowned into ice-age, and life from the Earth would have been swept away.
The greenhouse gases in the atmosphere like carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide are heat-trapping gases. Our atmosphere blocks harmful rays and works as a glass shield. It allows heat to be absorbed by Earth’s land and water during the daytime and emitted back during the night. The heat-trapping gases, then, come to work and trap the RIGHT amount of heat and prevent them from leaving the atmosphere.
Now there’s nothing wrong till now. This is basic science, we all know and have studied the greenhouse effect. But the problem arises when the EQUILIBRIUM is disturbed, i.e, more emission of these heat-trapping gases to Earth’s atmosphere increases the Earth’s temperature.
Now you must understand why balance is the core of everything that thrives in nature. No exceptions!
According to the Australian Academy of Science, we are now warming Earth about 10 times faster than at the end of an ice-age. And of course, this ain’t a big picture, the list of reasons behind is long – deforestation, increased carbon emission, poultry farming, etc.
While the human race is running to win the universe, for now, we don’t have any habitable planet other than Earth. Does it make any sense to destroy our only home?
How Can You Help As a Traveler?
I remember the picture and what it was like. It was like the déjà vu. I was in Old Manali, Himachal Pradesh, and on my way to seek blessings from Hidimba Devi. Gradually, while walking in steep mountain roads, my eyes caught the atrocity tourists and travelers must have caused – I see bulging plastic wastes thrown here and there alongside the road as if it was a dustbin.
This scene made me sad. And it was exactly what I saw while traveling in Kasol. Did we ever think about what kind of peril we are causing? Perhaps no.
I strictly believe that the first step to solving any problem is to become conscious and recognize it. And it doesn’t seem like most of us are even aware. So let me shower my piece of advice and the few steps I take to stay low and minimize my carbon footprint while traveling.
Please be aware of what’s around you. As simple as it sounds! Educate yourself about the environment and how you can savor it. Small things like throwing non-decomposable plastic baggage into a dustbin are helpful too.
Sometimes I remember my childhood days when I used to have chaat (an Indian street food) on a big bowl made up of leaves. These bowls are no more frequent in my region (they still exist in rural India). These are now replaced with their plastic substitutes. Similarly, Kulhad (a cup made of mud) teas are getting extinct as well.
I am not saying you to adopt this, my point is that you carry your own weight. Wherever possible, avoid plastic use and if you can replace it with a sustainable option – prefer that. Plastic isn’t bad, the way we are using and decomposing, surely is.
Become A Responsible Traveler
I don’t know why something as simple as traveling responsibly seems harder to the most. It’s just a buzzword – responsible travel. The idea is again to become truly aware of your effect on climate while you travel. This doesn’t mean that you stop taking flights or avoid driving your car.
The deal is how much you do of what you can control. It is like the quote says, “If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed.” Whether you travel often or not, start changing your basic habits.
One can not affect billions, but billions of ones can. Read that again!
Why Travel Was Always Necessary?
So why on Earth travel is being mentioned in a blog post related to climate change? You may be wondering, so let me tell you ⏤ because it’s related to travel as well.
Travel has always occurred to me as a powerful source of learning, healing, and getting lost into nature. I am a nature lover. Even if I am not traveling, I will make sure to get in touch with the gentle breeze and twinkling stars.
I had often wondered what effect traveling leaves on me. As I count:
(a). It makes me modest and understanding.
(b). Makes me know more about the world.
(c). I grow emotionally and culturally.
(d). I get to know about the past, present, and anticipated future.
I think traveling should be a key part of life. Kids should know about their country, city, and culture. It should not always come from printed books which they mostly find boring. At least that was the case with me.
Certainly, not all learning comes from books. Overall, if I sum up my point, it would be in the one word – ‘consciousness.’ Being conscious and aware is the first step to tactfully approach any problem in life. And by teaching this at an early age will surely ace up their abilities.
Living Close To Nature
I have always wondered why people are felling trees that consume carbon dioxide and emit oxygen for us. That seems wrong. But this is not the full picture. When I zoomed out and read more about it, I found that ultimately we need land for various activities, and without cutting down the trees, it is a tough task.
The problem is that we are doing it excessively. And the bigger problem is we are not realizing it. Maybe we can’t block the development of infrastructure, but you and I can certainly plant a tree – may be in front of our house, maybe in a distant far land.
The idea is that we can start changing ourselves and eventually things will automatically get aligned.
As a traveler, I now thrive to leave no harm to nature and our planet. But that’s not enough, because what I need is your support and love to keep swimming in this pool of difficulties. Are you aware of your carbon-footprints? Are you doing everything you can while traveling? Remember the question is not why everybody isn’t doing but why we are not?
So that was it. I think I’m now widening the area of my travels. Tell me what do you think about this post? And if you’d like it, please don’t forget to share it on your social circle. That’d be cool of you!