Ecocide is made by the combination of two words- eco means habitat or environment and cide means to kill or destroy. It is defined as destroying the global environment or killing off biodiversity. Ecocide on earth means the global devastation of oceans, seas, atmosphere, groundwater, migratory species, genetic heritage, animals, plants, and many more. Human beings are the main culprit of this act of crime. It has been committed continuously over decades resulting in the root causes of climatic and environmental deterioration such as earthquakes, ozone layer depletion, etc. The unlawful act has caused serious and massive destruction to ecology and the environment.
TYPES OF ECOCIDE
There are four types of ecocides. They are:
from the release of harmful gases(co,so2)from industries and factories, etc.
from waste disposal industrial activity, acid rains, accidental oil spilling, etc.
from chemical spills, mining-related activities, hydraulic fracturing (fracking), industrial overfishing, oil spills, pollution from plastics, etc.
from deforestation, intensive livestock farming, agriculture, arson, mining, etc
THE CAUSES OF ECOCIDES
The causes of ecocide consist of natural events but in today’s world, frequent natural disasteres (earthquake, tsunami, cyclone) are happening due to human-induces climate change. Human activities and actions indirectly are the major causes leading to ecocide.
In this modern world almost every sector of this materialistic world somehow is relying on fossil fuels. The fossil fuel reserves and capitalism are interrelated to each other which results in ecocide.
The production of livestock, commodities, etc by using global commons( air, water, forests, trees)is also a real threat to the ecosystem and environment.
Growing population means an increase in the use of resources. And when there is a need industrial requirements and demands increase too. These industries extract and produce harmful chemicals and gases which are hazardous to the environment and lead to ecocide.
Farming is too responsible for causing ecocide and destroying the climatic conditions of the planet.Chemical fertilizers, pest killers(weedicides, insecticides), and invasive species barren the land and affect the natural reserves.
for economic stability, many of us exploit the uses of natural reserves leading to ecocide. The mining and refining of precious metals are causing extreme damage to our environment.
One of the main causes of ecocide is warfare tactics. The expansion in nuclear weapons created great destruction, not for the country but also for the world and the environment. The example of Agent Orange Vietnam war is an unforgettable event or disaster of warfare tactics.
EFFECTS OF ECOCIDES
Human actions have affected the earth in innumerable ways. The effects are:
EXAMPLES OF ECOCIDES
The U.S. Military used the combination of Herbicide Orange (HO) and Agent LNX as part of its chemical warfare programme ‘Operation Ranch Hand’ to starve the enemies.
Hydraulic fracturing is a technique or process used in the extraction of natural gases and petroleum from the ground.Methane(CH4) leaked during the process worsen climate change.
It refers to a gas leak incident that occurred in India in 1984, Madhya Pradesh. The toxic wastes, from 4000 to 12000 tons, are still stored on the site and are polluting groundwater which is potentially poisoning people and ecosystems
- It took place in 2002. A tanker loaded with 77,000 tons of oil, sank about 250 km from the Costa de la Muerte”Death Coast”) is part of the Galician coast. This incident caused one of the biggest environmental disasters.
In this, the poor maintenance of oil infrastructure and the failure of some equipment destroyed the delta water.
opencast mines have also affected the environment by destroying vegetation, modification of river channels, etc.
STEPS TO STOP ECOCIDE
To stop the planet earth from deteriorating, each human being should take charge and responsibility to protect the environment. Here are some measures to be taken to save our earth.
- Reduce deforestation and promote afforestation
- Protect and Preserve endangered and crucial biodiversity
- Follow the Environmental law
- Harsh punishment for environmental rule and lawbreakers
- Ban on use of plastics
Ecocide should not be neglected. Still, the environmental and climatic situation is not controlled and the consequences are inevitable. To save and protect the planet earth as citizens, we must take responsibility for what we eat and buy. Also, try to reduce the use of plastics and promote clothes and jute bags.