Incidents of wild animals straying out of their natural habitats attacking human beings and causing destructions to properties have become too frequent. Such incidents are neither being reported and even it is reported, it is done without giving its true significance. Such incidents are nothing but nature’s warning. If it not taken care of immediately, then the “The day of the animals” is not far off.
The perpetuation, preservation and progress of human species, plant and animal kingdom are largely interconnected and their natural habitats, in many ways, depend upon the environment and eco-system in which they live. The demographic and ecological changes taking place in the world due to human actions and activities have created irreparable damages to environment and natural habitats. The current trend of damaging the ecological balances and environmental serenity can be arrested by adopting conservation as a way of our life.
Conservation means preservation of nature in its entirety. It is not preservation for the immediate future of man and his roaster of natural possessions, but also for the conservation of the world’s natural communities with their myriad number of species of animals and plants in some semblance of health and the means and vigor for perpetual self renewal. The existing plant and animal kingdom should be preserved not just for the pleasure of man but also enable the humanity to preserve them for the future.
Failure to conserve life forms should be considered as an act of barbaric vandalism because once they are destroyed, they cannot be retrieved and also they are lost to the world for ever. All communities and most of the species that have vanished from this world have disappeared with their stories untold or badly told. Most of the people are vaguely or not at all aware of the magnitude of the threat to the wild life and to the green cover of earth and the consequent devastating effect on human beings and the present urgency to arrest the dangerously changing environment and ecological situation.
The sustained growth and equitable development are considered as the greatest challenge facing human race. There is growing concern about whether environment constraints restrict development and whether development will cause unmanageable environmental damage impairing the quality of life of the present and the future generation. The stake of natural communities including human beings in an environmental protection is enormous. But environmental values have been neglected too often in the past and continue to be neglected mostly. The destruction of the natural habitats and the loss of biodiversity are creating unthinkable damages to the nature and future welfare of humanity. Human actions and activities result in appalling environmental pollution and damages. Global warming up is the direct result of environmental pollution and biodiversity damages.
Changes in eco system and bio diversity affect globally crossing all geographical boundaries. Forests are not just a source of timber and forest products. They perform a vide range of social and ecological functions besides enriching the lives of he forest dwellers and their cultural integrity, by providing a habitat for a hosts of plant and wild lives. Bio-diversity which is a combination of genetic information, natural communities and eco systems, provide material wealth and natural heritage to the world which should be handed over to the future generations. The only way to save the natural world from further degradation is through conservation pursued as a permanent and committed policy and not by way of expediency.
Conservations should include not only protection but also management of natural habitat along with their flora and fauna. The aim of conservation is to manage beneficial changes and to ensure that nothing in the existing natural world order is permitted to be lost as a result of man’s actions or inactions. Environmental degradation takes place when those who make decisions about using the natural resources ignore or underestimate the cost of environmental damages to the society. The decay and destruction are mainly due to market failures and policy failures. Markets frequently do not accurately reflect the social value of environment. Failure of government policy leads to inefficiency and ineffectiveness to implement the policy culminating in damages to environment.
Conservation should not be based on value or utility of the resources. Unfortunately the extractive business community treats the components of environment as if they are assets and liabilities of their business depending upon the resource value and exploited to the extent of their extinction. Policies and institutions are necessary to force the decision makers, from government level to the individual house hold level, to take note of the social value of these resources when they deal with such resources. This is not an easy task. But when government policies are publicly supported and firmly enforced, it can become more powerful than the market
The most obvious draw back of the present approach is that value change from time to time according to the prevailing circumstances. Thus what is worthless to day may become important tomorrow but often it is too late. Secondly even if value changes the complexity of nature makes human assessment of them inaccurate and incomplete. In a resource based economy the value of the natural product purely based on human demand and not on its ecological role in nature. The extractive society for all its pleasure and opportunities ignore ecological warning signals because it regards itself more important than ecology. But ultimately it cannot escape the wrath of nature.
What is needed is a holistic conservation. For that it is essential to know the complexity of the ecological relationship between the biological world including human civilization and its natural surroundings. When man altered his natural surroundings, the results were frequently unforeseen and unpleasant. The primary principle of conservation is development and use of natural resources existing in the world for the benefit of humanity. Secondly, conservation stands for prevention of waste. Finally, the natural resources must be developed and preserved for the benefit of all and not for the profit of the few. Conservation should be based on the informed analysis of accurate information. The government also needs to improve the way the bureaucracies make and enforce decisions besides building popular support and encouraging local participation.
But unfortunately conservation has become a highly debated political matter creating controversy between the vested interests and supporters of conservation. The support of the people is still lacking. No conservation will succeed unless it is implemented sincerely and faithfully by the government through its legislation with the full support of the people. What is immediately needed is to make the public aware of the impact of ecological changes and environmental damages on the quality of heir lives so as to inculcate in them a sense of urgency to understand their own role in the protection of nature. Government on the other hand should adopt a participatory approach and to create a better understanding of local values, knowledge and experience and to win the community backing for the project objectives and community help with local implementation and finally to help resolve conflicts over resource use.
The nature is ours and serves our needs and interest and it is our duty and responsibility to conserve it for our benefit and for the benefit of the future generation.
Banking & Management Consultant,
Facilitator: DRT & SARFAESI CASES and CONSUMER FORUM,
H.R.Trainer: Corporates, Colleges & Schools,
No. 8, Morya Gardens,
Indoe.452016 (Madhya Pradesh)
(The author can be contacted through his e-mail and he also invites comments from readers.)