Eco-anxiety refers to the uneasy feeling that comes with keeping the current degrading environmental conditions in mind. The concept of climate change anxiety is on the rise solely due to the inevitable natural or not-so-natural catastrophes.
Over the years, the Western countries have made several efforts to clean their own mess by entering into binding agreements with the rest of the world. The Montreal Protocol of 1987 proved to be a success in reducing the use of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs). It was followed by the Kyoto Protocol of 1997. An Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report stated that if the current scenario of global warming continues, the entire world will witness a horrendous global catastrophe in this lifetime.
The deteriorating plight of our climate severely affects the mental health of many people. Due to extreme climatic conditions in some regions, many communities are forced to move to new places. The devastating Australian bushfires were largely a result of severe climatic changes. The catastrophe wiped out huge numbers of animals and led to incorrigible air pollution that further caused psychological distress to those connected directly or indirectly with the fires.
Eco-anxiety works as an eye-opener because it sensitizes people towards the environment and makes them aware of what is ecologically okay to use and what is not. The sea level is gradually rising, groundwater is depleting, temperatures are rising all over the world and this is essentially a result of global warming. Many people are now choosing to follow a vegan diet as it is healthy for the environment.
The psychological distress caused by climate change is widespread. Natural resources will sooner or later be exhausted and irreversible climatic conditions are inevitable if the world continues to recklessly exploit the Earth. Ayushi, a student of SGTB Khalsa College stated: “At this point, eco-anxiety will act as a motivator for people to take action towards preserving the environment and saving the planet before it gets out of hand. We must collectively make sure that there is no wastage of resources happening around us.”
Feature Image credits– Time