What Can You do as an Individual to Save Environment

Daily reports on pollution and climate change are worrisome and it also highlights the ways through which humans are themselves destroying their only habitat. If we look at the situation one may think that we can do anything right now or what can someone do as an individual. There is also a controversy on “climate change is not real”.

While that’s where we are totally wrong. To bring huge changes, yes governments needs to be involved but as an individual person, everyone can do a lot to save the environment. There are a lot of environment friendly moves someone can take to preserve the environment. Being eco friendly / living a life centered on saving the environment is also good for wallet.

There are variety of area where you can take steps to reduce your environmental impact. Below is the areas where you can do a lot to help environment. Don’t forget to comment at the end of the article to help us understand “how you are contributing to help save the planet?”

“An Eco friendly life style is a Healthy life style”

  • Try to maximize usage of day light
  • Turn off all unnecessary lighting in your home, office, shop
  • Go on foot
  • Use bicycle instead of bike ( insignificant environmental  impact )
  • Use local transport instead of personal vehicle (low environmental impact)
  • Travel together
  • Use online platforms for meeting
  • Use energy efficient lighting and other equipment’s
  • Keep your AC at 26 oC
  • Shop virtually  (don’t have to travel to store using fuels based vehicle – saving environment)
  • Buy garments, shoes or accessories made in Eco friendly manufacturing system
  • If it’s cotton garment, then look for organic cotton tag
  • Look for garments made from recycled raw material
  • Order what as much as you eat
  • Take as much as you can eat (specially on public events, seminar, weddings)
  • Try to avoid wasting food items
  • Donate the extra food
  • Save water
  • Understand the expiry date of food stuff and manage it accordingly
  •  Take the extra food home
  • Try to create compost piles (can be used in kitchen gardening, roof gardening)
  • Avoid food packing’s
  • Try to buy items with less packing
  • Buy items with recycled packaging material
  • Carry around your own cup, don’t use plastic cups
  • If you are taking food away home, ask the restaurant, not to pack plastic utensils with it.
  • Reuse items
  • Eat local items (avoids traveling – saves environment)
  • Buy locally
  • Grow your own garden
  • Whenever you buy anything keep environment in your mind
  • Bring your own bag for shopping
  • Use non-toxic cleaning agent (eco friendly)
  • Say good bye to bottles (don’t buy new bottle, you can use a BPA Free plastic bottle or a glass bottle)
  • Take care of tree / plant more trees

Read more here on UN Alliance for Sustainable Fashion

“Tags contain a lot of information regarding manufacturing of products, so pay attention to labels and buy environment friendly products.

Environment Friendly products would mean that the manufacturer has taken care of all environmental issues during the manufacturing process of their products (e.g. less waste, less chemicals, less pollution etc.)”

Read more here on How Plastic is killing the Marine Life

So act, do, use and buy Environment Friendly

Rana Plaza Collapse, Bangladesh- 24th April 2013

On 24 April 2013, rana plaza in Savar housing, Dhaka collapsed killing 1,134 and injuring more than 2500 people ( different source mentions different number of deaths and injured). This building had done illegal extension of floor reaching 9 floors. There were Five garment factories, shops, banks in this plaza.

The factories in this plaza were producing garments for international brands i.e. Inditex (ZARA), Carrefour, H & M, Gap, Mango, C & A, Joe Fresh, Walmart etc. Brands didn’t took responsibility for unsafe condition in the factories.

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Under pressure from public brands paid 30 Million dollars and had to come up with two watchdogs:

  • Accord on Fire and Building safety
  • Alliance on Worker Safety

Read More on Compliance Requirements here: What is Compliance? Understanding Compliance in Textile Sector

Even after 6 years the survivors have not been fully compensated. Transparency International Bangladesh found our that 51% of the survivors are still jobless and most of them have not been paid any type of compensation.

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Now the survivors are on hunger strike and have 11 demands some of the demands are as follows::

  • Taking steps for the rehabilitation of the survivors
  • Providing medical services to them for life
  • Announcing 24 April as the National Rana Plaza Mourning Day
  • Bearing the education expenses of the victims’ children
  • Ensuring highest punishment of those responsible for the tragedy and confiscating their assets.

6 Years have passed but the people responsible for the accident have not been prosecuted as of yet. Sohel Rana, the owner of the factory with other responsible persons are on Bail. Sohel Rana was convicted on hidding his assets but not on killing.

Even after such incident, Bangladeshi are still struggling for their basic rights. Recently hundreds of Garments workers were fired just for demanding rise in basic pay.

Bangladesh Govt., International brands, NGOs need to do more for provision of Bangladesh Garment workers rights.