CLEAN BEACH: CLEAN ENVIRONMENT
By Muhammad Umer Khan
Department of Environmental Science, Federal Urdu University as part of its community social responsibility organized a beach cleanup day at Sea view Karachi. Large number of students participated in this beach cleaning campaign, including Department of Environmental Science teachers Dr. Nida Ali, Dr. Muhammad Usama Zafar, Muhammad Umer Khan, Waqar Ahmad, Maria Shariq, Atif Nizam, Saira Ali and Kanza Abid. The aim of the campaign was to create environmental awareness in society and to maintain the natural environment on the earth. Teachers also guided the students about the worth and significance of cleaning beach day.
The event was a drive towards better and cleaner environment and an effort to raise awareness for a cleaner and healthier environment among citizens. We have started our campaign on morning from the point of Village hotel to pick trash and cleaned the way to McDonalds at Sea view, while spreading awareness about the importance of keeping the beach clean.
Speaking on the occasion Dr. Nida Ali, Sea view is one of Karachi most common beach, which experience thousands of visitors every day. This result in littering along the scenic shore.
This event was organized to contribute in sustaining the beauty of our beach. Further said, such activities of keeping the environment clean and hygienic are of enormous importance for a healthy living. To achieve this target, each and every individual needs to do his best in controlling pollution. The elders should educate the younger generation about the hazards of pollution
Dr. Muhammad Usama Zafar said, Pakistan has blessed with a diversity of natural environments and our coast lines are one of the most beautiful landscapes in the world. However, pollution from sewage, industrial effluents and littering are serious threats for the marine habitat. This beach cleaning activity played a vital part in increasing awareness and creates a sense of responsibility for the environment among our citizens
Giving comments about beach clean activity, Waqar Ahmad said due to rapid increase in industrialization and urbanization, Karachi is facing various sort of environmental degradations. Among these, marine pollution is very prominent which not only destroys marine life but also causes serious health hazards to visitors as well. This event is a great effort of increasing awareness to peoples and to give our contribution in saving the environment.
Talking about on beach clean activity, Maria Shariq said ocean trash ranks as one of the most serious pollution issues of our time. Much more than an eyesore, trash in the water and on the shore affects the health of people, wildlife and economy. Almost half of the mangroves forest has been destroyed so far; releasing of harmful untreated effluents turned the Clifton coast worst habitat where no species can survive.
While Speaking to Muhammad Umer Khan, he told about Arabian sea and its coasts are delivering such immensely important and irreplaceable services that it can be truly named as father/mother of Karachi i.e., provisionary, regulatory and supporting services. But what we are rendering in return? Garbage, sewage and hazardous effluents!!! The beach cleanup program was organized to intensify our fading bond with nature because we don’t have its alternative. We just have few venues for recreation and habitat for the biodiversity flora and fauna. We are treating them unwisely. It seems that we assume ourselves as proprietor instead of stewards. As sea influences more on the life of peoples living near to it, so if we pollute our sea, we will face the consequences in return. We must stop harming our fragile coasts (Ecosystems) immediately otherwise the scenic beauties would be just available in history.
STUDY TRIP NEWS
By Muhammad Umer Khan
Department of Environmental Science, Federal Urdu University of Arts, Science & Technology Karachi Organized a Study Trip to Makli Heritage, Keenjhar Lake and Shah Jahan Mosque Historical Places of Sindh for Students.
A large number of students and teachers, including Dr. Nida Ali, Muhammad Umer Khan, Maria Shariq, Waqar Ahmad, Atif Nizam, Saira Ali, Kanza Abid and Ammad Ahmed visited the places. Teachers also guide the students about the value and significance of places.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr. Nida Ali informed students that Thatta is an historic city of the Indus delta. It had great importance in history and today famous for its archeological sites and centuries old monuments, which are great tourist attractions. Thatta was the capital of three successive dynasties, the traces of which are evident in the Makli graveyard, which spreads over a twelve square kilometer area. These dynasties are: Samma (1335-1520), Arghun (1520-1555) and Tarkhan (1555-1665). There are archeological sites in the city and on its outskirts. The most famous of these sites is the Makli Hill, which is the biggest necropolis in the world and about three kilometers from Thatta. Because of its cultural and archeological importance, in the 1980s UNESCO listed the Makli necropolis as a World Heritage Site. Makli Hills are the most preserved area of the necropolis. Later on, the city of Thatta was ruled by the Mughal emperors of Delhi through its governors, leaving an indelible mark on the shape of the monuments there. The most famous example of Mughal architecture is the Shah Jahan Mosque, constructed in the latter half of the seventeenth century.
Talking about Keenjhar Lake, Muhammad Umer Khan said, Keenjhar Lake is one of the largest lakes of Pakistan with an area 13,468ha and supplies water to the villages around the lake, Karachi city, Keti Bunder and Thatta. It is a perennial freshwater lake fed by River Indus. It supports an extensive diverse flora, fauna and is an important breeding, staging and wintering ground for a wide variety of waterfowl. The area has a great importance as roosting, wintering and breeding site for a number of resident and migratory birds. It is a Wildlife Sanctuary and a Ramsar site. Currently the lake’s freshwater ecosystem is under threat due to increased industrial and domestic effluent discharge into it. There are also problems of increasing pollution and resulting eutrophication.
Speaking a Senior Student, Amer Abdur Rehman, said that I have enjoyed a lot as the trip has introduced me with the rich culture of Sindh. I never visited places of interior Sindh before this trip. Further said that visit with teachers and professors always become healthy because they give basic knowledge of places. He said that such trips should be organized every year for students.
WHAT ARE THE ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES?
It is a scientific discipline that aims to find and know the relationships maintained by human beings and nature. The interactions of the physical, chemical and biological components of the environment, and the effects of human activity and its impact on biodiversity are analyzed. This discipline is related to another area of knowledge, not only with Natural Sciences but also with Social Sciences such as politics, economics, ethics, philosophy, etc.
The person who holds a degree in Environmental Sciences professionally carries out activities related to this discipline, and therefore receives the name of environmental scientist. This profession covers a wide range of work, such as waste management, hazard and risk mapping, environmental audits, etc. The environmentalist is characterized by being a person prepared and instructed to face all these tasks together, always taking into account the different points of view; It must have a vision of the planet, which allows it to design a predominant role in everything related to sustainable development policies.
GLOBAL WARMING & EXTREME WEATHER
Does global warming cause extreme weather events?
Since the beginning of the new millennium, the planet has been hit by innumerable extreme weather phenomena. In 2003, Europe experienced the hottest summer in its history. China suffered a severe drought and large displacements of land. Western Russia has experienced very hot summers. In 2011, the United States was affected by 14 extreme weather events. In Japan, Australia and Pakistan, unprecedented levels of rainfall were also recorded.
In the midst of all these great droughts, torrential rains and heavy snow, we have just seen Irma, a category 5 hurricane that broke the record as the most powerful hurricane in the Atlantic with winds of up to 185 miles per hour.
The question we must ask ourselves is: can these extreme weather phenomena be attributed to global warming?
Most researchers say yes, that global warming makes the climate more extreme. They suggest that the natural variability of the climate can produce heat waves, hurricanes and intense rainfall.
Scientists predict that, if the CO2 emissions that humans generate continue to grow, the intensity and frequency of this type of meteorological phenomena will also increase.
A recent study by a team of German researchers from the Institute for Climate Impact Research in Potsdam and published in the journal Nature Climate Change, has revealed that the recurrence of these phenomena is not coincidental, but there is a relationship between global warming of human origin and torrential rains or heat waves.
What causes global warming?
Global warming is an increase in the temperature of the Earth's atmosphere. Scientists say that the cause of warming is the increase in greenhouse gases that result from human activities such as the burning of fossil fuels (oil, coal, gasoline and natural gas) and also deforestation.
What is the greenhouse effect?
The sun sends its light and heat, its energy, to the Earth. The earth absorbs that heat. Some of that emitted energy goes into space, but the greenhouse gases prevent all the heat from going out into space, thus heating the planet.
Greenhouse gases are the most efficient in absorbing heat. Among them is CO2, which is what humanity in its consumption of resources has increased to levels never seen before and causes global warming.
If humans do not do our part to prevent global warming from continuing, the extreme weather events will be increasingly higher, which will have serious consequences for agriculture and for life in general.
What you can do
1. Waste. Separate the garbage from the things you can reuse and what you can recycle.
2. Domestic energy. Turn off the lights when you leave a room. Use LED, fluorescent or low consumption bulbs. Turn off the devices and disconnect them completely. Remember that a connected device also consumes, even if it is not turned on.
3. Use less the car. Walk, use a bicycle, use public transport, share the trip by car with more people. Reducing the use of your car in 15 kilometers per week avoids emitting 230 kilos of carbon dioxide per year.
4. Plant trees and other plants. Do not let them cut a tree.
5. Chemical products: Minimize the use of chemical compounds such as antibiotics, fertilizers and aerosols that may contain chemicals that affect the ozone layer.