Tuesday, March 01, 2005
In the material world, any economic decision taken, the environment ends up being the victim. Ecology is seldom a concern when it comes to ‘development’. In one of my previous blogs, you may have read about the course I am doing called ‘environmental and resource economics’. Some of the facts here are straight from the course content.
I don’t know how many of you know about endosulfan poisoning in Kerala, here’s what happened there. Have a look at the link http://indiatogether.org/2004/jan/env-endosulf.htm . Kerala govt. had ordered aerial spraying of endosulfan pesticides in mountainous terrains of Kasargod district. Unknown even to scientists that drastic consequences were inevitable in 20 years, the program was welcomed by every segment of the population. Villagers looked at this as signs of progress. Coupled by biological food chain and the natural soil movement, endosulfan tracked its way into human metabolism. People were taken aback by the extent of damage it caused. Economists were reluctant to stop the aerial spraying (it was started in 70s; effect was seen in the late 90s). The damages included physical and mental deformities, diseases of central nervous system and many more. After a long fight, Kerala govt. did impose a ban on spraying but all this was in vain. A private agency claimed endosulfan wasn’t the cause and successfully lifted this ban. The people continue to suffer even today. Please look at these links too.
Many of you would know about the Minamata disease caused by slow mercury poisoning. This link will provide the necessary information. http://rarediseases.about.com/od/rarediseases1/a/102304.htm Mercury was disposed off into the sea by Japanese industries. As in case of endosulfan, it penetrated into the human system and caused havoc. The symptoms here included (I quote from the web site) “Individuals began to have numbness in their limbs and lips. Some had difficulty hearing or seeing. Others developed shaking (tremors) in their arms and legs, difficulty walking, even brain damage. Others seemed to be going crazy, shouting uncontrollably.” Thankfully, Japanese are more sensible (or responsible) and took the necessary action.
Any decision that favours natural environment is taken only after much hue and cry. All of us are aware of the decision by UP govt. to close down industries around Taj Mahal. This came after persistent warning from experts and only after the damages on Taj Mahal were visible clearly. Why is it that
Frankly, I am quite impressed by
Here’s an encouraging fact, eastern
With this blog I wanted to bring the plight of Kerala’s people to attention. I hope concerned authorities take the appropriate action
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