National Pollution Control Day is observed on December 2 in the memory of thousands who lost their lives in the Bhopal gas tragedy in 1984. While there is rising concern around global pollution, closer home the rise in air pollution in different metro cities, including in the capital, are affecting our lives. Celebrities talk about air pollution and what precautions or measures should be taken and things they personally follow to prevent air pollution:
To reduce pollution, first of all, you must segregate dry and wet waste. The most important thing I tell everyone is that if you want to reach a place and someone else like your friend is also going somewhere in the same direction then both can take one car together. PUC check is really important. Also if you give someone a birthday gift, then you must give them a plant as well which will help to spread greenery around. Another is that we must use paper bags instead of plastic bags as unlike the latter, the former is biodegradable. The smoke coming out from the factory chimneys should be in a particular percentage which many big companies don’t bother much for their profit. I feel that all these things will save us. If you are eating chips worth Rs 10, throw that empty wrapper in the dustbin and not just anywhere else. In this way, plastic waste won’t spread.
I carry my own cloth bag and avoid single-use plastic bags on a daily basis. I like to keep the wrappers with me till I see a dustbin in a public place. I have replaced my plastic water bottles at home with steel and glass ones. I also encourage sustainable fashion, one of the ways to do that is to invest in quality clothes and shoes that have a longer life and you don’t end up buying them again and again. I believe you can make small changes in everyday life and play your part. Why do I do all these? I have seen many farmlands becoming barren because of plastic, shortage of water and that is one of the most direct and long-term impacts you can see. But closer home, I was also one of those who got stuck in the July 26 Mumbai floods along with many others. Such things have a way of staying back with you and make you more aware of the way you live.
On the homefront, we definitely segregate the wet and the dry waste. We have potted plants as well and when I am travelling by car I make sure that I have my small dustbin bags. It’s always in the car so that if I have to throw something I can use those. As an actor, what I really make sure is that I don’t use or waste tissues, instead I carry cloth napkins. I have seen one of my senior actors doing that. Even when removing makeup just don’t waste tissues and make sure that every bit of paper is used properly. This is what one of my senior actors has taught me and I still do that.
I am always up for an eco-friendly and sustainable lifestyle and since my early youth years I remember I don’t use plastic and try to find an alternative for that. Consciously, I am aware of reducing my carbon footprints. I have always supported brands that are working towards it. I recently promoted a brand that has made fabric out of plastic pet bottles and there is another brand that is using vegan leather for their bags and accessories. I am consciously taking part in whatever possible way and whenever I can. Especially on celebrations I don’t burn crackers and choose to light earthen diyas and I am very much aware of my deeds. Also, I love plants, but because of my busy schedule and travel plans, I can’t have too many plants but I do have a few green buddies at my place which I am happy to have. Along with that, I am associated with organizations and brands who grow trees on your behalf for special occasions, and in this, not just me, but my entire family are involved in it. We are doing our bit in saving our Mother Earth.
Reduce utilization of personal vehicles and try to use public transport. More the vehicles on the road, more the pollution. We all should segregate wet and dry waste too. Everyone has to take responsibility and initiative.
I think I make a genuine and conscious effort of not encouraging anyone around me to litter or spit etc. And yes PUC (Pollution Under Control) check is very important and I make sure I get it checked at regular intervals.
There are two kinds of pollution, one is outward which we observe on December 2, and the other one is inward, that is the polluted mind. The second one is the most dangerous of the lot, where all the pollution is created. And this we need to observe 24X7, 365 days. If we really want to go to the root cause of surface pollution we have to first cure our selfish minds. Rest all of these will be cured automatically.
I am a vegan. Adopting a vegan diet decreases air pollution by saving carbon dioxide emissions. According to the Veganism Impact Report, the world would see a 70% decrease in CO2 food-related emissions if the current meat-eating population were to go vegan. I also use the kitchen waste to make manure for the plants in my home garden. I don’t litter either or spit at public places. Small changes in lifestyle could contribute in a big way for the betterment of our planet.
This day reminds people that man-made pollution can be a tremendous threat to human lives. To control the pollution I believe in a few points that I have been following since my childhood, something my teacher taught me. I think using public transport is a very good option though my work doesn’t allow me because timings are different and difficult, but people must use it. I save electricity by not leaving the fans and lights on unnecessarily. I believe in recycling and reuse as it is helpful in reducing pollution. The major problem is plastic bags and in India, it’s quite difficult to avoid them, but giving it a try and avoiding it is a move towards controlling pollution. I follow these measures and don’t litter anywhere. I have stopped bursting crackers and even in my family, it is prohibited. The best thing I follow to reduce pollution is that I have 20 plants at my home and I take care of them and nourish them.