The state of our environment has not been great in recent years; rising air pollution and falling glacier levels have been threatening our future as a sustainable species on this planet. But through this we have also learned that change is possible and must be undertaken by every individual on the planet doing their little bit. The good news is that change has occurred, albeit a little slowly. So, in this storm of all the things we’re doing wrong, we’d like to highlight the things that we’ve done right.
- Tiger population is at an all-time high:
In the last hundred years, around 97 percent of the tiger population has perished, leaving us with little hope of their revival. But with great initiatives and a lot of effort the numbers have risen consistently. In 2006, there were 1,411 tigers in India which rose to 1,706 in 2010 and 2,226 in 2014.
2. Giant pandas are off the endangered species list:
Thanks to aggressive conservation efforts by the government of China, the giant panda has been removed from the endangered species list in 2019. Due to poaching and deforestation their population had reached a startling estimate of less than 1000, pushing China to implement a slew of laws and initiatives to save them. And it worked as their numbers have risen in recent past from 1,596 in 2004 to 1,864 in 2014.
3. Investments in renewable energy have grown:
In the past 10 years, installation of renewable energy for electricity has risen 25 percent annually. Great news for our environment as that means fewer coal burning plants and more energy from solar and wind plants. Karimnagar, a town in Telangana, is also making solar panels mandatory for any new construction projects. The establishment of solar panels has raised standards of living for agriculture workers and made electricity a lot more accessible for people not connected to the central grid.
4. Electric cars are becoming more accessible:
Cheaper and cleaner in the long run, electric cars have existed for a while but have never been as accessible as they are now. Companies like Tesla, Audi, Mercedes and Chevrolet have all bet on a future where petroleum cars have been made obsolete by the rise of clean energy. Countries like India have also promised a ban on sale of petrol & diesel cars by 2030, ensuring that the future will be electric.
The point of this article isn’t to tell you the world is in great shape. It’s not. We still have massive amounts of pollution, there are species on the brink of extinction and a rising sea level that can drown the coastlines of countries. But change is always possible. Yes, it is hard and yes, it will take a lot of time and effort, but it’s our responsibility as a species to at least give it a shot. Look, we’re gonna be here a long time; the least we can do is clean up.