In this article, we will be going to discuss about THE MULTIDISCIPLINARY NATURE OF ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES and we will be focusing on its scope and importance in the educational system.
THE MULTIDISCIPLINARY NATURE OF ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES
- Environment literally means Surrounding in which we are living.
- Environment includes all those things on which we are directly or indirectly dependent for our survival, like, living component like animals, plants or non living component like soil, air water.
- Environmental studies is the region that explores the affinity between people and the environment.
- Environmental studies deals with every issue that affects living organism.
- It is an applied science, it finds practical answers to the rising important question of how to make human civilisation sustainable on the limited resources that are available on earth.
Its main components are :
Environmental services provided by the ecosystem.
- Environment is an integration of several subjects that include both science and social studies.
- The scope of environmental studies is extremely large and covers some aspects of almost every major discipline.
- The natural history of the areas in which we live, we would see that our surroundings were originally a natural landscape, for example- a forest, a river, a mountain, a desert, or a combination of these elements.
- Our dependence on nature is so great that we cannot continue to live without protecting the earth’s environmental resources .
- Therefore, most traditions term to our environment as Mother Nature and most traditional societies have learned that respecting nature is important for protecting their own lives.
- This has led to many cultural practices that have helped traditional societies protect and preserve their natural resources .
- Industrial development and intensive agriculture that provides the goods for our increasingly consumer oriented society also uses up large amounts of natural resources like water, minerals petroleum products, wood and so on.
- Non-renewable resources, such as minerals and oil, will be exhausted in the near future if we continue to extract these without a thought for subsequent generations.
- Renewable resources, such as timber and water. can be used but be regenerated by natural processes such as regrowth and rainfall .
- Deforestation leads to floods in the monsoon season and dry rivers once the rains are over.
- These kinds of multiple effects on the environment resulting from routine human activities must be understood by each one of us, if it is to provide us with the resources we need in the long term.
- Understanding and making ourselves more aware of our environmental assets and problems is not enough. Each one of us must become more concerned about our environment and changing the way in which we ca use every resource.
- All our actions must be environment friendly.
- Natural resources are limited Water, air, soil, minerals, all. the products get item forests, grasslands, oceans and from agriculture, are all a part of our life support systems.
- Without them, life itself would be impossible.
- As we keep rising in number and the quantity of resources we uses also increases, the earths resource base must continuously shrink.
- The earth cannot be expected to indefinitely sustain this expanding level of utilisation of resources.
- Increased amount of waste and pollution contaminating our existing supply is a threat to the quality of life for all .
- This situation will only improve if each of us begins to take action our daily lives that willhelp restore our environmental resources.
The total Economic value- direct and indirect use value of a given ecosystem
NEED FOR PUBLIC AWARENESS
- As the earth’s natural resources are rapidly dwindling and our environment is being increasingly degraded by human activities, it is evident that something needs to be done.
- Protecting our environment is economically more viable than cleaning it up once it is damaged.
- Individually, we can contribute a major role in environment management.
- We can reduce wastage of natural resources and we can inform the Government about sources that lead to pollution and degradation of the environment.
- This can only be made possible through public awareness. Mass media such as newspapers, radio and television strongly influence public opinion.
- If you join an NGO that supports conservation, you might be able to influence politicians to make green policies.
- There are several Government and Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) working towards environmental protection in our country. They have created a growing interest in environmental protection and conservation of nature and natural resources.
ENVIRONMENTALLY SIGNIFICANT DAYS
World wetland day
|28 February||National science day|
|21 March||World forestry day|
|22 March||World water day|
|18 April||World heritage day|
|22 April||Earth day|
|22 May||International biodiversity day|
|05 June||World environment day|
|11 July||World population day|
|16 September||World ozone day|
|28 September||Green consumer day|
|03 October||World habitat day|
|1-7 October||Wildlife week|
|04 October||Animal welfare day|
|02 December||Bhopal tragedy day|
INSTITUTIONS IN ENVIRONMENT
Among the large number of institutions that deal with environmental protection and conservation, a few well-known organisations include government organisations Let’s look into them.
Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS), Mumbai
Botanical Survey of India (BSI)
The BSI was established in 1890 at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Calcutta. However closed down for several years after 1939. After reorganisation, with the development and establishment of different regional centres, the aims and objectives of the Survey were redefined by the Programme Implementation and Evaluation Committee in 1976 with a view to encourage taxonomic research and to accelerate scientific expertise for the preparation of a comprehensive list of the flora of the country,
Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB)
Madras Crocodile Bank Trust (MCBT)
MCBT, the first crocodile conservation breeding centre in Asia was founded in 1976 to conserve Indian crocodiles and establish a programme for the conservation and propagation of other species of endangered reptiles. Over the years, over 1500 crocodiles and several hundred eggs have been supplied to various State Forest Departments for restocking programmes in the wild and for setting up breeding facilities in other states of India and neighbouring countries.
CPR Environmental Education Centre (CPR EEC), Chennai
It conducts a variety of programs to spread environmental awareness and create an interest in conservation among the general public It focusses attention on NGOs, teachers, women, youth and children to generally promote conservation of nature and natural resources. Its programmes include components on wildlife and biodiversity issues. CPR-EEC also produces a large number of publications.
Centre for Environment Education (CEE), Ahmedabad
This was initiated in 1989 It has a wide range of programmes on the environment and produces a variety of educational material, for various target groups.
- Environmental studies involves understanding interactions with the environment.
- It requires an integrated approach to several disciplines of science and social studies.
- We live in-t world where natural resources such as land, water, forests, minerals, oil grasslands and wetlands which are limited
- We cannot continue to over-utilise these resources beyond the earth’s assimilative capacity.
- Thus, the sustainable use of resources is of utmost importance. Everything around us forms our environment and our lives depend on keeping its vital systems intact.
- We need to individually take responsibility towards preserving our environmental resources.
EXERCISE QUESTIONS FOR PRACTICE
- What is the scope of environmental studies?
- What is the importance of environmental studies?
- What are some of the activities that you can be a part of to raise environmental awareness amongst people.
- List any 5 environmental events.
- Name and describe the activities of any environmental institution that you are aware of.