February 26, 2011 Leave a comment
Pakistan Environmental Studies- 1: Introduction
Earth is made up of hard and soft elements known as natural resources. Some are found on the surface, in the air, under the oceans and many of them exist inside the earth. Each element is a treasure, a blessing from our Lord Almighty. Thus we all are dependent upon His mercy in each and every second of our lives.
یہ کرہ ارض جو اربوں لوگوں کا اس کائنات میں واحد گھر ہے۔۔۔ مختلف قسم کےعناصر سے مل کربنا ہے۔۔۔ کچھہ زمین کی سطح پر, کچھہ ہوا میں اور بہت سارے زیر زمین یا سمندروں میں۔۔۔ یہ سب کے سب الله کی نعمتیں اور اسکی رحمتوں کی نشانیاں ہیں۔۔۔ اس لحاظ سے ہم سب ایک ایک لمحہ الله کی رحمت پر زندہ ہیں۔۔۔
“When the earth is shaken to her (utmost) convulsion, and the earth throws up her burdens (from within)”…..(Surah Az-Zilzal/The Earthquake)
“(It is) a Day whereon men will be like moths scattered about, and the mountains will be like carded wool”….(Surah Al-Qaari’a/The Calamity, The disaster)
“When the sun (with its spacious light) is folded up: When the stars fall, losing their lustre: When the mountains vanish (like a mirage); When the she-camels, ten months with young, are left untended; When the wild beasts are herded together (in the human habitations); When the oceans boil over with a swell;”….. (Surah At-Takweer/The Overthrowing, Extinguished – Wrapping up Things)
“Then, when one blast is sounded on the Trumpet, and the earth is moved, and its mountains, and they are crushed to powder at one stroke”…… (Surah Al-Haa’qah/The Reality)
As a child and a teenager, I believed that the final hour (Yaum-ul-Hashr) will just occur suddenly in one hour time as we measure it by sixty minutes or three hundred and sixty seconds. I was really terrified to imagine that how such an enormous system of life will be destroyed in few moments. Then I was relaxed by some ahadith mentioning the signs of the end of the time. I developed satisfactory feelings that at least I won’t be alive to face the calamities of the final hour as they will happen one by one. The pleasure didn’t last for long. The explanation of this couplet of Iqbal snatched away all my thoughtful comfort forever, producing a tremble that we are passing through the final hour.
یہ گھڑی محشر کی ہے تو عرصہ محشر میں ہے۔۔۔ پیش کر غافل عمل کوئی اگر دفتر میں ہے۔۔۔
The famous explanations describe the final hour as the time between the era of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and last sign that is the sun will rise from the west. The catastrophes will go through different phases all interlinked and each generation will be the witness to the tribulations of their own time. Each blaming the previous one for creating the mess ignoring their own participation in it’s progress.
Tsunamis, earthquakes, floods, melting glaciers, rising sea-levels, extinction of species of birds and animals and of forest as well, barren lands promising hunger…and the most of all, the deadly armaments. Just a quick look at the causes of current environmental threats will reveal the most hideous facts to the people of wisdom that human beings are behind all this mess and have caused the signs of Hashr to happen so consistently and are energized for it’s accession.
Every nation, every religious group, every political party, every community, every criminal, both human genders, all are fueled up with the determination of wiping off each other from the face of the earth. Failed in saving everything, I don’t know how do we succeed in reproducing human blood to shed for this purpose?
Men in explosions are scattered like moths. Hills are broken to pebbles for construction. Mountains are losing strength for nuclear explosions and are turning into dust-powder by bombardments. The oceans’ surface are heating up. Wild beasts are jailed in cages in human populations. Earth vibrates and shakes with digging and drilling, spilling out it’s hidden treasures, revealing fossils to tell the stories that were buried in there long time ago.
Pakistan Environmental Studies – 2:
Allah (SWT) has gifted the world with natural resources of both kinds; renewable such as fruits and vegetables, cotton, meat, poultry, plants, flowers, trees, honey, herbs, solar energy and non-renewable such as fossil fuels (coal, petroleum, oil and natural gas), rocks, stones, gems, marble, many minerals and nuclear power.
The products manufactured by the reproducible resources can be prepared in proportionate to their usage, such as food products, medicines, skin products, cosmetics, vegetable oil, vegetable shortening, milk, wool, wax/candle, fabric, leather, paper, pencils, rubber, wood furniture, etc.
Other natural resources that may not be reproduced easily but possess energy to reproduce their product i.e. electricity are water and wind. Wind Energy helps in generating electricity. Hydrogen Energy generates electricity through flow of water. Geothermal power generates electricity from the steam of heated water. Bio Energy through plant materials and landfill or animals waste can help in producing heat and electricity. Ocean Energy is helpful in producing electricity from the power of waves and trapping water in dams by tidal energy. Solar Energy produces steam (hot water) and electricity.
Non-renewable resources cannot be reproduced so people must be very careful about relying upon them. They are present in a fix quantity. Once they are used up, they can’t be replaced or refined to their original state. They need to be replaced with reproducible alternatives before facing issues of scarcity.
Pakistan is blessed with all kind of natural treasures out of which the most precious is its fertile lands. Being an agricultural country, it could have developed a very strong economic hold in the region and internationally. Unfortunately, the land has been a victim of environmental damages caused by the negligence of its own citizens. Polluting air, land and water is not the only sin that they have committed but are also guilty of destroying their agricultural fields and forests which could have been the main source to provide “roti, kapra and makan”.
Another interesting aspect of most of the non-reproducible items is that they are solid and are the part of the earth. They make the mass of this rocky planet. They exist in form of layers or filling up the inside of the ball people are living upon. They are present in a proportionate to the geographical features of different areas both inside and on surface. Mines are dug with the purpose to scarp them out. Once these solid layers are removed, they leave a gap or a hollow space. These kind of spaces can cause a collapse of the surface, shredding the size or dis-balance in it’s geological shape. Just imagine a hard spinning ball made up of different solid materials and then it is extracted to build some long, wide, tall, heavy features on the its surface. Now empty or semi-hollow from inside, would it be able to move as smoothly as it was before? Would the surface be as steady as it was or will have chances of breaking up due to the burden on its surface?
http://www.arpnjournals.com/jabs/research_papers/jabs_0806_14.pdf……… (M. S. Sarir1 and M. Ilyas Durrani1
1Department of Soil and Environmental Sciences, NWFP Agricultural University, Peshawar, Pakistan)
Pakistan Environmental Studies – 3
Farming, Forestry, Fishing, Gardening:
So lets talk about the renewable resources. They consist of two main types of living things; plants and animals. Fruits and vegetables, flowers and trees, plants and herbs, crops, birds and animals, insects, sea animals. They are very common and very important for us.
Since the beginning, all human activities have been based upon filling the stomach, covering the bodies and finding a roof to live under. For centuries, men were accustomed to nature. Human populations traveled and chose to live near water sources and woods. Farm animals were part of their lives. They were skilled in hunting. They grew their own food. They exchanged commodities for goods and services. They didn’t have any tax system. Their particular tribes were their sole interest to be loyal to.
If I am not wrong, it is Islam which introduced the concept of gathering tribes and nations as one human community, known as universal brotherhood. Feeding in mind how different communities can be more useful to each other under the system of justice and equality, exchanging commodities, knowledge and skills, Islam prevailed.
Time has changed. Skipping the causes of chaos, hatred and division, the reality that humans are facing right now is that, politically, they live inside fixed boundaries. They can’t travel around as freely as did their past generations. Economically, they are categorized in communities by profession. The members of each profession are dependent upon others for their survival. Socially, many families are recognized by their family talent, such as tailor, milkman, farmer, embroider, mason, gardener, goldsmith, iron-smith, butcher, confectioner, carpenter, weaver, driver etc. Individuals are introduced by the occupation they choose, such as a physician, an engineer, a journalist, a writer, a singer, an actor, a teacher, a banker, a businessman etc. They live under one government. They all pay taxes to the government. Their tax money is used to build infrastructure for everyone’s benefits.
Now, nothing exists anymore as a free land to travel to and occupy it to gain individual or tribal benefits or even for financial reasons. Traveling means to live among other groups of people, respecting and not disturbing their way of life.
The world has become more economic as anything people desire to do cost them money. People buy and sell and that balances the finance. The economic activities that are based upon renewable resources and/or the products that are made from them is more reliable for stability than which involves the non-renewable material. That is because they regrow.
Forestation, farming, gardening are good for health, give food for people and animals, provide habitat for birds and animals, supply ingredients for medicines and cosmetics. They are part of our faith, a form of worshiping God Almighty as Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) said, “planting trees is ibadah”.
Wood as a reproducible item means a lot to our lives. Wooden industry creates long-term jobs and has a wide room for innovation. The wooden products are light weight for shipment, are recyclable and easily disposable.
Flowers are not only a symbol of beauty but they do contain substance for beauty products. Honey is their healthiest food product. Wax from honey combs is used for making candles for light.
The solution to food crisis and unemployment simply lies in growing more and more food and focusing on animal agriculture. Farming not only satisfies the basic food requirements but also sustains industries with the purpose of manufacturing food based products. Wool and leather are two very common and very important worldwide commodities.
A country like Pakistan which is blessed with more than forty-five big and small rivers and streams and a long and alive coastal line should have no excuse for lacking fishing harbors and their related activities.
The entire textile and fashion industry depends upon cotton crops. Hotels, restaurants and caterers cannot survive without a reasonable supply from live stocks and poultry farms. The educational system anywhere is founded upon the use of paper and pencils, which cannot be prepared without trees.
Problems in Pakistan:
1) Agriculture, fishing, forestry and livestock sector are still run by non-educated part of our population. They are still not reached and supported by experts and researchers of those fields. Their educated consumers don’t take part in solving their problems at any level.
2) The entire educational system is missing subject/courses related to reproduction of food and animals.
3) The educated minority mostly consists of professionals with community services. They provide services by eating food, using herbal supplies, wearing uniforms, using stationary items, prescribing medicines, building houses, driving vehicles, delivering mails and packages, using computers — whatever they are using, they buy it, don’t grow the resources.
4) Feudal system and lack of interest of educated people has resulted in moving villagers to main cities. Their migration has caused two simultaneous effects on our economy; decreasing food producers, increasing food consumers along with beggary, homelessness and health problems.