Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Environmental Education Basics and Brief on Bhutan's Initiatives

What is environment?

Who does not know the definition of environment? You are very familiar with the environment as it is a thing that you daily interact with. It is the surrounding you live and from where you derive oxygen to breathe, water to drink and other elements that coexist with us like plants, animals and so forth.
Promising Vision of Dorokha Community
Why is environment important?

Our environment is composed of dynamic ecosystems and food chains providing basic life supporting services for all the creatures. Humans, being part of this ecosystem, are immensely benefited and any disturbances caused will bring harmful consequences affecting everyone in the system.
Humans are virtually greedy and are exploiting their environment on daily basis for their comforts and luxury causing imbalances in the environment. The visible effects of frequent landslides, windstorms, prolonged dry periods and unprecedented heavy monsoon rains on agriculture and biodiversity are already evident thereby making us even more vulnerable to climate risks. However, these effects can be greatly reduced by perusing sustainable development goals and mainstreaming environment into any plans and programs.

What is Environmental Education?

It is approach through which individuals and communities interact and have understanding on myriad issues taking part in various actions for the purpose of balancing or making the environment better. It basically covers awareness and sensitivity; knowledge, skills and attributes concerning environment; and participation.
View of Phuntsholing town and Indian town

Why is Environmental Education Important?

Future of any nation or a community heavily depends on the quality of people or youths they have. Environmental education will better prepare our children to have innovative and intellectual leader who will help sustain our environment for generations to come.
Literature show that many nations fail to have better environmental literacy. An environmentally educated individual will always weigh the economic prosperity, benefits to societies, environmental health and our own well being. Having environmentally educated population is as good as having them prepared for any kind of uncertain natural calamities thus nurturing them as person who manages environment responsibly and sustainably.

Brief Introduction of the Blog and my country Bhutan
Scenic beauty of Dochula Pass

Therefore, I have planned to blog regularly on environment thus educating individuals, communities and world at large. I will blog more of theoretical aspects of environment but not forgetting the practical experiences and events from Bhutan who is committed to maintaining 60 per cent of its land under forest coverage for all times and being carbon negative. 

Bhutan is a unique country. Happiness of the peoples is more important than their economic status. Bhutanese plans and policies are based on a unique development philosophy known as Gross National Happiness (I would call it as a paradigm shift). This philosophy is built concerning the general well being of the people rather than focusing on the country’s GDP. It is build on four basic pillars: socio-economic well being; tradition and cultural; conservation; and good governance. If you look closely into these pillars individually, you will realize Gross National Happiness is in real important than Gross Domestic Product.

Bhutan is committed of staying carbon negative. Commitment does not seem like a piece of cake but in Bhutan things are moving fast. As stressed earlier, Bhutan forest coverage is more than 70 per cent. Bhutan also planted close to 50000 trees on 2nd June 2015 thus breaking a Genius World Record. Similarly, to mark the Royal Birth, Bhutan planted 108000 plants on 6th March, 2016. These initiatives are awesome especially when the world is fighting to climate change and environmental management.

Tent out of Yak Skin
“Think globally, act locally” is my best quotes. Follow my blog posts regularly to get updates on our local initiatives and to get yourself environmentally literate. Best of luck and enjoy reading.

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