Earth Day: Preserving the harmony in nature
Earth Day: Preserving The Harmony In Nature. The habitat of variety of species surrounded by water, full of greenery ,cool breeze, this is what our mother earth is all about –in more simple terms land,species,water ,air. Very simple terms having precious meaning in themselves.
The habitat of variety of species surrounded by water, full of greenery ,cool breeze, this is what our mother earth is all about –in more simple terms land,species,water ,air. Very simple terms having precious meaning in themselves. All of these form a beautiful heaven on earth itself.These are all natural treasures which are to be secured and not to be exploited.
This year it is the 45th anniversary of Earth day celebrations on April 22nd.The need for such a day has arised due to innumerable activities of mankind that has raised alarm on earth in the form of global warming,overpopulation and many critical environmental issues.
Alarm for saving environment ,species, is heard continuously, but the result is not in decrease of activities leading to exploitation of nature, but there has been a decline in the available species and much awkward to say extinction of some of the rarest species. The extinction of species ,changes in the climatic conditions ,biological imbalances occur when places having huge ecological importance are being altered for many reasons such as for development of new projects like thermal power constructions or for any other modern day technologically advanced factories. One such ecologically important place is a wetland .Wetlands are a rich source of biodiversity. The development activities like construction of factories or power plants in wet lands lead to destruction of natural habitat which balances the ecosystem and which protects the environment.
Out of many unique wetlands, one is navapada swamp-swamp means a wetland. In 2008, In spite of its vast ecological importance, nearly half of the area of navapada swamps, about 2450 acres was sanctioned for construction of thermal power plant .Navapada swamp is a unique wetland-fresh water wetland and brackish water wetland and a transition zone, conservation reserve etc.The uniqueness of navapada swamp is that it is a brackish water wetland but during rainy season ,it serves as a fresh water wetland and it is a transition zone, where the water through creeks ,mixes into the bay of Bengal. Before the construction of vamsadhara dam,the fresh water of navapada swamps was used by the villagers for cultivation. Being a brackish wetland it is a habitat for a vast variety of species, it has mangroves also known as mada forest which act as barriers during storms, it is a rich source of sea food. Later in 2011, after a long struggle from environmentalist and the local people about 1950 acres was allotted for development , out of which 1150 acres was for construction and the remaining 800 acres was to be left out as wetlands without constructing anything. From navapada to sompeta there is a chain of wetlands whose waters join into the ocean. SOMPETA- is another fresh water wet land, where in 2007-2008, more than three fourth of the area was sanctioned for construction of power plant. In sompeta, through lift irrigation, 1000 acres area is cultivated..After a strong protest from the local people especially the fishermen community, the sanction was withdrawn for development projects which could have polluted the area leading to the exploitation of natural habitat.
Presently it is the case of PULICAT Lake .The significance of pulicat lake is that it is the second largest brackish water lake in India with an area of 720sq.km.including sriharikota island, and is situated in the states of Andhra Pradesh and Tamil nadu-with 84% in A.P. and 16% in T.N Both the states have notified the lake area as sanctuaries in September 1976 and October 1980 respectively. BNHS have recognized the lake as an important bird area of India (IBA) .About 202 bird species were recorded in the lake. It is also forage ground for spot billed Pelicans and Painted storks of sriharikota nesting colony. The lake is rich in biodiversity-it has 65 species of birds,12 species of prawns and 20 species of crabs, it also supports mammals and reptiles.The lake is very important and major foraging ground for flamingos,about 15000 greater flamingos and lesser flamingos visit the lake for feeding from october to march from great Rann Of kutch their breeding place.Because of the lakes rich biodiversity and ecological entity, 46 villages(16 island villages and 30 adjoining villages) depend on it directly or indirectly for their livelihood.
Three years back, government of Andhra Pradesh selected Dugarajupatnam (Pulicat Lake) to establish a world class major sea port, from among three places. The three places were Nakkapalli in Vishakhapatnam district, Ramayapatnam in Prakasam district, and the third one being Dugarajupatnam in Nellore district. The port will be established in entire 5000 acre area which will cover the sanctuary and its eco sensitive zone. However in 2014,in response to the environmentalists lodging complaint in the high court to protect ecologically sensitive zone of dugarajupatnam, the news has been aired that the Nellore administration has changed the location of the port to tupilipalem village which is close to dugarajupatnam.
This is the contribution of some of the many Wetlands which are a rich source of biodiversity .They balance the environment by maintaining an atmosphere which is suitable for the existence of life on earth.But knowingly or unknowingly we are polluting the environment causing harm to the various other species which share our home-the EARTH with us. One thing is for sure is that life can exist on earth without HUMAN BEINGS but we-human beings cannot survive without the support of this vast bio diversity. We can guarantee our survival only if we protect our mother earth-water ,air, ,wetlands, varieties of species etc.Each one of us should pledge to protect it and do the possible contribution for our own well being.
Whenever development activities are undertaken which may harm the environment-an alternative should be arranged so as to minimize the harm done to nature. Development is the need of the hour so is the need for the protection of mother earth from our own acts. Every person on Earth shares the responsibility to do as much as they can to preserve the planet’s finite natural resources today and for future generations.
By Lavanya K