In recent weeks, images of decreased smog in Beijing, wild animals wandering the streets of the United States, and unpolluted canals in Italy have been posted through Youtube, Snapchat, and Twitter, helping to give hope to a demoralized world community.
The spread of coronavirus has prompted nations under lockdowns to curb or avoid travel, including agricultural and manufacturing operations across the globe. These measures are being taken to stop the pandemic and to save lives.
It is causing more considerable distress for the people, job shortages, leading to economic hardships for the societies are other grim facts that we face today because of the Covid19 global pandemic.
Most countries have already attempted to combat the spread of the virus with significant COVID-19 diagnostic tests and the development of social distancing public policies the focus centers around the health of individuals.
During all the bleak news and grim times we face internationally, there are things to focus on, especially on the climate and pollution, as the pandemic progresses, both the protection and regeneration of environmental sustainability are undergoing new standard.
Climate scientists expect that the first time after World War II (Global Carbon Project, 2020), greenhouse gas ( GHG ) emissions will decrease to levels never before seen. This result is attributed mainly to the policies of social distancing introduced by the governments since the pandemic occurs.
Minimal operation from manufacturing facilities, factories, and construction industries has reduced the chances of emerging pollutants, resulted in increasing the quality of the environmental air.
Data for Pakistan last few weeks have shown that Pakistan’s lockout has resulted in a dramatic decrease in pollution rates in many cities around the country.
The findings were similar in India too; March 22 was the ‘Janata Curfew,’ during which a significant dip was observed across the country in air pollution levels. Cities such as Chennai, Bengaluru, Kolkata, and Lucknow have seen their daily Air Quality Index ( AQI) remaining in two digits.
Social distancing initiatives were introduced in Hubei province (China) in late 2019. This resulted in power plants and industrial plants halting their production.
The use of cars has declined considerably. Much of this led to a dramatic decrease in amounts of Nitrogen Dioxide ( NO2) and Particulate Matter with a diameter of fewer than 2.5 μm (PM 2.5) in major Chinese cities.
Furthermore, reports say that China’s energy consumption and pollution have fallen by 25 percent over two weeks, which is expected to reduce the country’s total annual carbon emissions by 1 percent.
Many animals have been seen in towns while residents remain at home due to lockout and transport restrictions. Owing to the pandemic, demand for seafood and food rates have all declined, and fishing fleets worldwide are mainly sitting idle.
Sea turtles were seen laying eggs on the beaches they once avoided (such as the Bay of Bengal coast), leading to lower human intrusion rates and light pollution.
Noise pollution is one of the critical causes of human and climate irritation, causing health issues and changing the existing conditions of the Environment. (Zambrano-Monserrate and Ruano, 2019). Most governments have implemented quarantine steps which have forced people to remain at home.
With this, the use of public and private transportation has dramatically reduced. Financial operations have almost absolutely ceased too. Both these improvements have led to a significant decrease in noise levels in most cities around the world.
In the end, the lesson from this is that as nations come to terms with the coronavirus, better enforcement of the environmental laws must be deemed a priority to ease the adverse environmental effects of human action.
- The Global Carbon Project.(2020). https://www.globalcarbonproject.org/index.htm
- COVID-19: nitrogen dioxide over China.(2020). https://www.esa.int/Applications/Observing_the_Earth/Copernicus/Sentinel-5P/COVID-19_nitrogen_dioxide_over_China
- Zambrano-Monserrate, M. A.,Ruano, M. A.(2019). Does environmental noise affect housing rental prices in developing countries? Evidence from Ecuador. Land Use Policy, 87, 104059.https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0264837719304247
- Coronavirus Impact | Air quality improves in India, finally. (2020).https://www.moneycontrol.com/news/economy/policy/coronavirus-impact-air-quality-improves-in-india-but-will-it-prevent-climate-change-5067011.html
- Korten, Tristram (April 8, 2020). “With Boats Stuck in Harbor Because of COVID-19, Will FishBounce Back?”. Smithsonian Magazine. Retrieved April 24, 2020.
- While you stay home, animals roam free in our towns and cities. (2020). https://www.euronews.com/living/2020/04/25/while-you-stay-home-animals-roam-free-in-our-towns-and-cities