Mother’s Day has recently passed and I am writing this blog to celebrate the Mother who we should also be celebrating as we so often leave her behind. The mother for whom we would not exist, for who we all depend on, namely Mother Nature. Our lives are evolving so fast and our technology has come a long way. Day by day we hear a lot about calamities near and far thanks to our ability to communicate around the world in minutes. Shocked and surprised, yes indeed, but the question is what are we doing to solve or even try to understand what’s going on with the world that Mother Nature has given us to live in. In my mind I feel as if there is an out cry from above that is saying ‘Enough is Enough”. “I have given you this beautiful place for you and your families to live, to enjoy and to grow in and yet you are destroying it. I have created a place that will allow for lasting memories that you won’t forget”. Yet, what I see is the hurt that we inflict upon the land given to us by Mother Nature.
I travelled to the Philippines long time ago before Covid-19 and I was amazed by how serious they contributing to save the forests, lands and beaches by cleaning up the garbage and debris. Primarily plastic packaging and plastic bags. Both the people and the Government are tackling a problem that has gone on too long unchecked.
Plastic shopping bags are being replaced with paper bags. No more plastic sent to land fills, no more plastic in the lakes, streams and oceans. They are removing the garbage that have accumulated in the lakes, rivers and sea. You can watch it on YouTube as people both locals and visitors have captured it on their cell phones. I’m so surprised of the changes that have occurred between the last two times that I have visited it.
Here in Canada, if you forget to bring a recycled shopping bag, they will give you a plastic bag at a cost 0.05 to 0.10 cents per plastic bag. Shopping over there, I noticed if you have a lot of non plastic alternatives to carry groceries and retail products. They have paper and fabric bags which can be purchased at a low cost that you can re-use as often as you wish. Some supply paper bags or offer to sell re-usable bags. While others simply do not provide bags at all ensuring that customers will provide their own. Our observation here, very few retailers offer paper bag or cardboard boxes, yet but most still supply plastic bags. This needs to change. It’s a small change that can make a huge difference to our environment, our lives and to Mother Nature. Imagine no more plastic bags floating in the air. No more plastic bags caught in the branches of trees or being added to over flowing land fills. I can honestly say I have yet to walk outside and not see a plastic bag within 20 to 100 feet from my door.
I once came across an interview in which Melinda Gates was stating that each and every one of us has to contribute to the wellness of our world. It can not be left to only a few people responsibility, we all have to contribute in any way possible and as for the government which has the big role to make this happen and as they do their best to make it happen by making changes, we should also do the same thing.
Yes, this will change our lives and yes this might make things inconvenient or awkward at first but I totally agree with her view on this subject matter. Change does not have to be radical or all at once. Simple changes over a period of months and years can occur that will allow all of us to adjust our lives and our business for the betterment of planet, our people and Mother Nature.
Let’s face it, the two major factors that prevent changes are (1) our resistance to change because we are creatures of habit and (2) the idea that such changes would disrupt business and possibly lead to economic problems. That’s not true. Economic changes occur all the time whether we make changes or not with both positive and negative effects that the average person never see or simply accept. One thing taught by all Business Courses, Gurus and Leaders in Business is that change is constant and not changing can lead to very definition of failure. That is a simplistic saying that has more implications but that is also another conversation as well.
Changing with proper planning and the implementing of a stabilized transition to change would cause a small but very manageable changes that would see prosperity and reduced costs. We are spending more and more to have natural foods and water yet we don’t change the reasons as to why we are in that mess in the first place. Our desire to put profit before anything or anyone else first has been our Achille’s Heal for most of human existence and is more than haunting us, it hurting us.
We are living and enjoying this world that was given to us by Mother Nature and if we want it to be a world that we want to continue to love and enjoy for our families and for the future generations of our families to come then we all have to contribute in taking care of it. Fair enough, right? Yet it seems to me that some of us don’t really care at all or simply do not believe it.
Talking about our world and Mother Nature is not a joke and its certainly not a cliché. We have to be serious and we have to take real action to changing and correcting our current mistakes. More importantly we need to take action now to prevent greater mistakes that will no doubted become a disaster for all of us. Don’t wait until a disaster happens before you act on it. You have heard in the news about pending flood, tsunamis and earthquakes. We even create block buster films and TV shows illustrating the possible disasters that could happen. Some of which are not far away from becoming reality.
We can take steps to prevent them, deal with the outcome and find ways to reduce the tragedies that we have caused because we know how devastating they are. So why are we not taking this seriously. Why are we ignoring it or worse denying its very existence? When this becomes a serous problem, it will be too late to react and to costly to our lives and our world and yes to business and the almighty profit margin. We can all contribute in our own way. We are all in together so why not begin now before its too late. What are we hearing still for over a decade that the earth is getting hotter? It is becoming a problem now but we can take simple steps to change. We are each one person each able to make a simple set of changes and if the 7 billion plus individuals work together to take care of the most important place in our world we will prosper, we will better our world, we will better our lives and the lives of those to come.
So here are a few simple things that we can do to start as individuals and as a society.
- Plants are natures filters. They help filter our air. Invest in seeds or bushes or trees. Grow them in your home, in your backyard or your balcony. Grow some vegetables or fruits. Growing them at home can reduce stress, reduce some of your grocery costs and add to air quality. Garden Centers offer great ideas regardless of whether you have a backyard, just a patio or even a window. Plants are versatile and can grow almost anywhere.
- Make it a habit to bring bags for your groceries. Plastic bags need to be removed as they are draining on our environment. Most of us have a box, cupboard or area with a bunch of bags clumped together in our household. Imagine that multiplied several thousand times. Now picture that being dumped into a land fill every couple of weeks. Now picture not having those bags in your home, that space is free and more importantly its not ending up in a land fill.
- Dispose of your garbage by recycling as much as possible, paper, plastic, and glass. Compost the bio degradable. You will see your land fill destined garbage reduce quite a bit. That garbage might even become the smallest amount out of the three. Every community, township or city has these programs in place. There is not much work involved and its an easy adjustment to anyone’s lifestyle.
- Always maintain cleanliness whether at home or at work. Throwing trash in a bin and not on the ground doesn’t seem like much but if 7 billion people stop throwing trash on the ground and instead in the proper recycling or garbage container’s, the worlds pollution would be reduced by a sizable volume.
- Give back to Mother Nature by Riding a bike, walking, or where a vehicle is required, car pool. Reduce using Air Conditioning and conserve water. In Canada alone a population of just over 35 million people wastes millions of dollars in house hold energy and water costs lost by running equipment, appliance and taps unnecessarily. Simply look at it as money that you are just throwing away that could have been spent towards bettering your life.
- Increase awareness of the dangers of not taking care of the environment to our children and teach our children how to live better with less pollution and less waste. If we continue to ignore these issues, we won’t have a place to call home for future generations.
- We should implore our governments to mandate on builders and developers to incorporate trees and green spaces in all developments. The plants and trees help decrease noise and pollution as well as reduce the heat loads that are ever present in our concrete world. This would help to reduce energy consumption and the pollution associated with generating that energy.
- We would like to see schools include in their curriculum the introduction of gardening to teach the youth the importance and establish the awareness of taking care of our world. Teaching children the simple joy of gardening will help to increase their respect for our world and impart the understanding of the consequences of not taking care of our world. Also, to have the knowledge where their foods come from and that way, they can make healthy choices.
- Limit the over consumption and wasting of food. Many of us are throwing far too much food into garbage and composters. This is just adding to growing garbage problem and draining our resources.
- Water pollution, we need to stop, not reduce not make gradual changes but stop dumping garbage be it waste liquids, foods, chemicals, solid matter containments into our lakes, streams and oceans. There are now dead spots in the oceans of the world where no plants or fish are able to sustain life. These dead spots are growing at an alarming rate. This includes our sewers. Most of our water comes from these places and have been recycled again and again and will continue to be recycled. Water is the one few substance that we cannot live without, yet we go to great lengths to pollute it. Most of us go through life never having tasted pure infilter, non chemically treated water. It would be great if one day our world could go back to drinking just natural water.
If everyone helps, everyone wins.