Corona: The other side of the coin

On March 11, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic as the numbers are clearly showing that we are living through a health crisis the scale of which will be overwhelming in coming days. Life has changed beyond all recognition as we know of it. Already global trade has been disrupted, flights have been cancelled and people are now working from home or staying at home.

Amidst all the chaos we are missing out on some interesting positive effects on the environment in particular and society in general. Let’s look into some of these:

  1. Restoration of Environment

Most remarkable one is the effect it is having on environment most notably seen in developed and developing industrial nations like China and western countries.  A significant drop in air pollution is seen in many parts of the world owing to the industrial shutdown.  This resulted in a 5- to 10% drop in air pollutants like carbon dioxide in New York. Methane emissions have also dropped significantly.  Dolphins are returning to the shores of Italy. The condition of Ozone layer is improving. With all this there is a ray of hope for countries to be able to meet their Paris Climate Accord goals according to experts. 

2.  Personal goals

At personal level too improvement can be seen particularly in living standards. Due to Corona outbreak everyone has now developed the habit of washing their hands more often and covering their mouths while coughing or sneezing. This will soon become part of our lifestyle. Coming to sin habits like smoking, drinking alcohol etc. or buying clothes, gadgets, or expense of petrol/ diesel, these 21 days would surely help one save some cash and health in long term. Also many individuals are giving their bodies and mind the rest they deserve with no pressure of reaching office on time, no exam pressure and no 5 am alarms.

3.  Family Time

People are now reconnecting with long lost friends and relatives. Families are spending quality time playing games, practicing new forms of art, pursuing some hobby, etc. With no eating out and no shopping people are working on their kitchen skills.

4.  International Unity

Internationally too countries have pushed aside trade wars, border disputes, illegal immigration and other issues. Corona being the common enemy that cannot be killed even with the biggest weapons, rival nations has joined hands in fighting it. Nations are offering monetary help to the underdeveloped nations.

5.  The eye-opener

Beyond everything, the whole society is going through a phase of self-realisation. There is a realisation of interconnectedness of the humans beyond race, religion or caste as corona has affected us equally. The society is realising the concept of live and let live along with animals and plants.
Amidst all the tragedies and chaos it has bought, we sure have learnt the concept of sustainable living.

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