But is global warming to blame? There is no doubt that the social impact of modernisation is crippling this country in every conceivable way. As the old joke goes, if you don’t beleive in God, stand in an Indian city street at peak hour one night. Divine intervention is the only plausible explanation for anything happening smoothly, when the sheer number, sound level, and chaos of vehicles is beyond human understanding. I would be far more concerned about how India is contributing to global warming than suffering from it. I’m not sure which side would win that bet…
More of a concern, however, is the current crisis of the India’s uncontrolled expansion and its very real impact on the environment. Particularly in Delhi, which Gardiner Harris, author of a New York Times Sunday Review article this past weekend, calls among the most populous, polluted, unsanitary and bacterially unsafe cities on earth. Harris’ article was far more substantial a red-flag warning than sensationalist posts about the death toll of India’s summer being a harbinger of the end of civilisation as we know it.
The city is crippled from respiratory issues that are murderous. And by “the city” I mean residents, inhabitants of every species, buildings, and resources...all are dying.
Then there’s the sewage. I’m not even touching that in this article: it would take far too long to cover. The point is the sanitation and health issues in the country are legion, especially now when temperatures are skyrocketing as they always do at this time of year. Summer is summer: Emperor Akbar dealt with the issue of drought, extreme heat, and food shortages during his rule in the 1500s. People died, water was scarce, food and crops consistently unavailable.
In other words, nothing has changed in the temperature stakes. That the country is exploding in population and vehicles and buildings is a concern; that the resources are being stripped from the earth without a thought for the future even more so; that the contribution of this nation to environmental issues far exceeds many other nations’…well, that’s downright embarrassing.
But right now? It’s summer, and it’s about 50C out there. And that’s not due to global warming: it’s India’s climate.
Can we get a dose, please?