COVID, ECONOMY AND ENVIRONMENT
- Usha Acharaya
- Jun 16th, 2020
Today whole world is coping with pandemic COVID-19. The lockdown across the world has completely halted industries, agricultural activities and overall development as if clock has stopped ticking. Halted industries, flights, transportation and agriculture with the people locked inside their homes have badly affected the local and global economy as well.
More than 210 countries are in the various stages of lockdown. In this period, the nature found its time to rejuvenate. The level of air and water pollution has sharply decreased making the environment clean. Will the humanity be able to maintain the conditions of air, water and environment after world resumes to the previous schedules is a big question. This is, in fact, the right time to rethink about the ways to change our businesses so that Earth’s regeneration potential and human activities go hand in hand.
UN chief Antonio Guterres had warned that the corona virus pandemic is the most challenging crisis the world faces since the Second World War, and will lead to an economic recession that probably has no parallel in the recent past. The lockdown has created losses to existing enterprises that are paralyzed and are struggling to pay their debts and loans as well as cover their administrative cost. It has highly affected daily wage labors struggling for hand to mouth. Framer and industrialist are other highly affected ones.
Farmers suffer because their products are not getting market and getting spoil; on the other hand consumers are paying higher prices for the food including vegetables. Private companies’ workers are losing job. With the start of lockdown there was dramatic fall in the stock market which is worrisome.
According to Erin Duffin, April 28, 2020, there is no exact estimation of economic loss damage across the globe due to COVID-19 pandemic. Previously economists estimated global economy will shrink by 0.4% after the virus was declared the global pandemic and before world went to lockdown. All the produced food products are about to be consumed completely and there is no supply of raw materials for furthermore production. Farmers are still struggling to get seed, baby plants and the fertilizers, which is not in the radar scale of the Nepali government yet.
Good news with the lockdown is that the climate across the world is reviving. Though it might be for short time until this lockdown continues but it is good for the other animals, birds and plant including human being itself. However, environmentalists fear that when the lockdown ends, the state of environment and climate will be worse than ever. It has been envisioned that business will try to revive by increasing their level of production to compensate the loss during the lockdown.
The increase in developmental activities and production of all the industries including brick kilns may help to revive economic loss, but the global climate will further deteriorate creating unhealthy environment affecting living beings. There will be increase in pollution, rise in temperature, accelerating melting of ice caps, which might result to havoc and dangerous the virus. Scientist has feared that more unknown viruses captured in the ice of polar region may revive with the melting and affect the humans far beyond our level of imagination threatening human race.
Nature is the reason of the survival of living creatures including human beings who are more advanced but showing dominance to other species. This pandemic has forced us to reflect on our past and rethink on the ways we will life our life. Development is necessary but it needs to be done in compliance with protection of environment. Even within a period of a month, the earth has rejuvenated which has urges us to rethink on how much pressure human being has given to the nature.
This Pandemic taught us about various alternative sources of development that will help economic development by maintaining the good environment and climatic condition. Like, giving more priority to electrical vehicles, solar energy, and wind energy should be given more priority. Will all the developed countries only think about their economic loss or will they also think on collectively improving environment. Given today’s scenario, maintaining a balance between economy and environment is highly depending on activities of the developed countries. Nevertheless, our contribution also counts. Let us creatively use this situation to balance the economy and environment and make this planet a beautiful home to all the creatures and ensure the good future of coming human generations too.