The corona virus pandemic has completely shaken the world. From the IT sector to the tourism industry, all aspects of the economy seem to be undergoing a major downfall. It is not surprising that the virus has caused major panic and hysteria across the world where popular culture has predicted a crisis like this at least a thousand times. Like Will Smith from ‘I am Legend’ people too have come up with ingenious ways to tackle this issue. While hoarding up on toilet paper and hand sanitizer is certainly not advisable, there are certain measures one must take to maintain sustainability.
What is Sustainability
As the name suggests sustainability means to sustain, to use resources judicially and efficiently for future use. The term is often associated with the natural resources of the planet that are undoubtedly about to run out, but that is for another article. Everything on this planet has a limit, and each individual must respect that limit.
During these dark and challenging days, sustainability has a changed meaning. A person buying away all the essentials is not practicing sustainability, it is hoarding. The pandemic has led to a shortage of several essential items and instead of purchasing these commodities in control, people have gone haywire and bought much more than what they are going to need. In doing so, people have a caused a lot more damage than they realise.
The Need of Sustainability
Sustainability has become the most important concept in this lock down period. In this difficult period, hoarding items is not the ideal way to deal with the shortage of commodities. The accumulation of toilet paper in the Unites States, the stockpiling of hand sanitizer and the unprecedented gathering of Atta in India has all lead to massive problems in equal distribution. It is important to understand that in this Pandemic we are together. Our unity should not be portrayed through mass gatherings and bursting crackers, but rather by having concern for our fellow citizens.
The first and foremost aspect of a sustainable life is to acquire only as much as you need. The government has assured us that the supply of basic and essential commodities will not be hampered yet there have been multiple instances of people buying much more than they need. Well, the distrust of the citizens towards the government is not a new phenomenon, but in these testing times we have to make sure that we are supportive of our brothers and sister throughout the world.
The stashing away of supplies has heavily affected the healthcare and medicinal facilities. Doctors and nurses are working overtime to ensure that affected people are taken care of and it is our duty as responsible citizens to stand by them. The quarantine has also forced lot of labourers and daily wage workers on the road. With no money in their pockets and no food in the supermarkets, these workers are completely helpless.
Another area, where hoarding by individuals has cost the health department severely is the mass procurement of N-95 masks that are crucial to tackle the virus. There was a reported shortage of such masks due to large masses of people buying these to protect themselves from the COVID-19 . According to studies, wearing the mask out in public will not prevent the virus from spreading and only infected people must make use of the mask. The shortage of the masks in hospitals has caused a major setback in the battle against this lethal virus.
The gravity of the situation has not been registered properly in the minds of the people. The extra kilogram rice that you purchase just for emergencies, could actually be changing the life of another person. Therefore, in order to ensure the safety of the people around you, restrict your purchases of essential commodities to only the bare minimum necessary.
The second step in maintaining sustainability is to make sure that you use supplies judicially within your house. There are people around the world, losing their livelihood and lives, the least we can do is support them by making sure we utilize resources sensibly.
The interesting fact about sustainability is that it is not just restricted to food items and daily need commodities, even using your internet at slower settings can help you back people all across the world. The leader in online video streaming, YouTube, reduced the quality of every video to make sure that people around the world can effectively use their internet at the same time.
As citizens of the country, it is our duty to look out for one another. Buying the bare minimum requirements, utilizing the internet on a lower setting and not unnecessarily purchasing masks are a few methods to effectively deal with this pandemic. Our unity as a nation, in this hard time is essential to provide support to the doctors and para medical staff who are putting their lives on the line.