Man-made fires and Environmental conservation: A Fellow’s observations

Man-made fires and Environmental conservation: A Fellow’s observations

Amrita Bhattacharya joined the SBI Youth for India fellowship and chose to work towards spreading awareness about environmental conservation and responsibility towards nature in villages. This blog post is her view about the monetary greed that drives a man to destroy nature.

The forests in and around the area where I live in Uttarakhand, Pithoragarh Berinag Forests, have been on fire for close to a month. Only now I have seen some posts in the media about the devastating fires that are raging in Uttarakhand. Reportedly, nearly 1900 hectares of forest land have been destroyed and the fires continue to rage, engulfing the region in a haze of smoke. The locals say it has not been this bad in a long time, as the dry pine needles, prone to fires, are still more vulnerable in the drought-like state where it has not rained for several months.

The concern is even more when you find out that the fires are often man-made and intentional, showing a serious apathy towards the very forests that maintain the ecological balance of the mountains. The pine trees which are often tapped for resin are left weak and the inflammable resin exposed on the bark. These trees, after they are burnt in forest fires, dry up and are cut and sold.

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As I spread awareness about environmental conservation and inculcate responsibility towards nature during my fellowship journey, the deep sense of greed of men to destroy nature for fleeting monetary benefit hits me even more.

environmental conversation(Man in fire)

Putting out fires with twigs!!!

As I remember Gus Speth, a US environmental lawyer said: “I used to think that the top environmental problems were biodiversity loss, ecosystem collapse, and climate change. I thought that thirty years of good science could address these problems. I was wrong. The top environmental problems are selfishness, greed, and apathy, and to deal with these, we need a cultural and spiritual transformation. And we scientists don’t know how to do that.