With 25 years of coming into effect, the world has phased out about 98% of the ozone depleting substances!
Since the fortunate time that human have actually realized what upheaval they have created and disrupted the balance of the planet. People all around the globe have taken vehement steps to improve the conditions of the planet. And every time people have come together to bring about change unanimously it has worked wonders. Creating a huge impact, on not just the environment but also the other silent audiences who were moved by the actions of a few and finally shunned the act of ignorance, coming forward to become a part of the ecological movements for a healthier greener Earth.
Endangered Species Act : According to the US Fish and Wildlife Services, The Endangered Species Act (ESA) of 1973 is a key legislation for both domestic and international conservation. The act aims to provide a framework to conserve and protect endangered and threatened species and their habitats. By providing States with financial assistance and incentives to develop and maintain conservation programs the Act serves as a method to meet many of the United States’ international responsibilities to treaties and conventions such as the Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and the Western Hemisphere Convention. The multinational species conservation acts function as amendments to the ESA and grant the division the authority to providing funding for projects that aim to conserver and protect these species.
Right a few years after the first Earth Day which was celebrated on 22nd April 1970 which had brought millions of Americans together to gather and peacefully discuss about the environment , this made the government listen and act upon the pressing issues. The endangered Species act was passed to save the wildlife who were on the brink of extinction.
According to Wikipedia the effects over the years have been remarkable. As of January 2019, eighty-five species have been delisted; fifty-four due to recovery, eleven due to extinction, seven due to changes in taxonomic classification practices, six due to discovery of new populations, five due to an error in the listing rule, one due to erroneous data and one due to an amendment to the Endangered Species Act specifically requiring the species delisting. Twenty-five others have been down listed from “endangered” to “threatened” status.
Chipko movement: The Chipko movement was an initiative by the locals of the villages of Chamoli district Uttarakhand. This was first observed in April 1973, the act of hugging the trees to stop officials from cutting it down. This practice was followed by people all over, turning it into a nationwide phenomenon. Who knew this would become exemplary and have a crucial role in the upcoming environmental movements all across the globe. The Chipko Andolan is a movement that practised methods of Satyagraha where both male and female activists from Uttarakhand played vital roles, including Gaura Devi, Suraksha Devi, Sudesha Devi, Bachni Devi and Chandi Prasad Bhatt.
Not only was it an initiative to stop deforestation by peaceful means but is also viewed as an ecofeminism movement because of the crucial role played by women in protecting their indigenous environments. This was seen as an example that resilience and efforts of even a few can have such a huge impact.
Rio Earth Summit: The 1992 United Nation’s Conference on Environment and Development was known as the Rio-de- Janerio Earth Summit held in June 1992. The Earth Summit was a UN event which was majorly conducted in response to the member states who wanted to cooperate and bring about changed pertaining to the environment. The main topics up for discussion at the summit were finding alternative sources of energy to replace fossil fuels, water supply and usage, reduction of carbon dioxide by encouraging use of public transportation.
The Earth Summit resulted in the following documents:
Earth Summit basically paved the way for a lot of reforms and further discussions making more and more nations to come up and act together for a unanimous ultimate goal to preserve the planet and curb the harmful practices of mankind and finding alternative ways by tackling the various problems individually.
One of the major achievements of this was an agreement by the member parties which led to the climate change convention and paved way for the Kyoto and Paris protocol.
Kyoto Protocol: This international treaty was adopted in Kyoto, Japan on 11th December 1997 which later came into full effect in February 2005. The main motive of this protocol was for the countries who were a part of this to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Based upon scientific research the main reason for the worldwide global warming was found out to be the incessantly increasing carbon dioxide emissions majorly because of human activities. And when we come to think about it, for a fact the human race is to be blamed for the drastic changes that our planet has gone through and in fact still is. The view was that all the nations who were a part of this treaty had to be responsible to mend their ways and work towards reducing the greenhouse gases. The developed countries by logic were responsible for the emissions that had already disrupted the environment and hence the responsibility to clean up the mess was more severe on their shoulders. But amendments have been added to the protocol to decide what targets should be set for the developing as well as developed nations and not just put the burden on one and to decide what steps should be taken for those countries which are not a part of the agreement. The impacts have been significant and the reductions have been visible but with ever emerging nations more and more steps need to be taken to make sure the effects are reduced and are long lasting.
Montreal Protocol: The Montreal Protocol, finalized in 1987, is a global agreement to protect the stratospheric ozone layer by phasing out the production and consumption of ozone-depleting substances. An international treaty to protect the depleting ozone layer. Climatic projections have estimated that if the treaty that has been agreed upon is worked upon vehemently and more nations come to participate in it, the ozone layer will recover to the state that it was in 1980, by the years 2050. There have been various phase out plans that were decided upon to come into effect at certain points in time, focusing on each of the greenhouse gases individually to have maximum effect.
Scientists have witnessed a detectable reduction in greenhouse gases and even leveling out of such gases but still there are some nations who have gone under noncompliance and are having a global impact on the ozone layer by releasing some of the greenhouse gases and not monitoring the emission levels. With 25 years of coming into effect, the world has phased out about 98% of the ozone depleting substances!