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Guiding Light: Global warming and need for tyagaa (sacrifice) for a better environment – Free Press Journal

Everyone is speaking about environmental issues while experiencing this year as the hottest year. But nobody is willing to sacrifice, tyaaga. The diplomats fly in their private jets for conferences on global warming. A teenage girl screams in front of the camera, accusing the older generation of stealing her future. Good photo opportunity but doesn’t really change anything unless people are willing to have the value of tyaaga, giving up, letting go of certain things in their life.

How many of us are willing to give up switching on the air conditioner all the time in the peak of summer? How many of us are willing to cut down showering time to a couple of times a day and no more than two minutes at a time? Imagine the global warming due to methane gas released by the cattle as a part of the growing cattle industry which slaughters cattle. If we were to limit the cattle industry to only dairy products, more than 90% of the global warming from that industry would come down. If we are willing to become vegetarian, more so. It takes seven pounds of grain to make one pound of meat. One pound of meat is a hearty meal for one individual. Seven pounds of grain will feed a family of four for a meal. But nobody is willing to give up beef or non-vegetarian food. Just giving up beef will reduce global warming significantly.

The western world is definitely not willing to do that. People would be surprised to know that 71 % of India eats non vegetarian food. For me, the real heroes of this environmental battle are willing to make these personal sacrifices to contribute to lower global warming. These unsung heroes have created private forests, water bodies, and water harvesting. Gujarat is way ahead in the use of solar power. These are the real heroes of climate change who are willing to do tyaaga, sacrifice their time, effort, energies and money in making a difference. Not people who just attend conferences to create awareness or scream in front of the camera.

(The author is founder, Aarsha Vidya Foundation. You can write to him at aarshavidyaf@gmail.com)

Published on: Friday, May 13, 2022, 07:22 AM IST

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