Every year, World Environment Day (WED) is hosted in a different city across the world. A unique theme is selected for the week along with a slogan that highlights the efforts to protect the environment and promotes awareness regarding various environment-related issues. This year, the theme for World Environment Day is ‘Think.Eat.Save’. The ‘anti-food waste’ campaign aims to reduce the carbon foodprint.
According to reports from the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, one in every seven people in the world go to bed hungry and more than 20,000 children under the age of five die daily from hunger. Based on shocking facts like this, awareness is needed for conservation of food and to avoid the wastage that happens during day-to-day activities.
Environmentalist Nandini Pratinidhi says, “We have a tropical forest ecosystem. We need to preserve our hills to ensure a brighter future with respect to availability of food. The best way to do so is to grow forest plants which are on the verge of extinction in the near future. Such plants can be very useful in fulfilling our food-related needs,” she states.
Pratinidhi adds that having proper distribution of agricultural farms everywhere is important to avoid an explosion of population at a particular place as abundance attracts population. “Moreover, do not fill the godowns. Instead, use the land under cultivation to grow rare plants. If efforts like this are taken, it will contribute to the worldwide efforts to save the environment,” she states.
Another environmentalist from the city Dr Ankur Patwardhan says, “The need of the hour is to go for rare forest-found edible plants which are known as uncultivated foods. These are not live plants but they work wonders on malnourishment. Plants like Halunda and Karanda are used by tribal and local people living near the forest areas. They are rare and scattered but have considerable nutritional value in them.” He adds that the proper cultivation of such plants will help reduce food scarcity. “They can be planted in the backyard for their medicinal usage as well.”
Street play for awareness
Swatantra Theatre and Ecoexist have organised a street play to spread awareness on WED. A play titled Zara Soch Ke Dekhiye will be staged to stress on the need to recycle the small things that we use in our daily lives. It will also educate the audience about disposing various types of waste.
on June 7, 7.30 pm onwards
At: Phoenix Market City, Viman Nagar.
To attend various awareness programmes, gather at the following venues: Baner Gaothan, near PMC Arogya Kothi, Nigdi Chowk, Pimpri- Chinchwad, Municipal Corporation (PCMC), Shankar Math and Daulat Nagar.
From: 8 am to 7 pm
What you can do...
> Cook only the amount which will be consumed at a time. The usual tendency to cook a bit more leads to wastage in daily life.
> During any event that involves serving food to a large number of guests, prepare food in installments. Also, inform a nearby NGO that accepts food at such instances.
> If you have a large stock of vegetables or fruits, don’t throw the excess quantity. Turn them into healthy vegetable soups or smoothies and fruit pies.
> Don’t waste food on your plate. Serve small amounts to restrict the wastage.
> Buy only what you need.