The COVID-19 lockdown brought us clean air and a blue sky, but at a cost; What do we need to keep it going? Sunita Narain sets the agenda
The World Environment Day in 2020 has come amid a when enormous disruption and tragedy due to the novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic and ensuing measures to curb it. Several countries across the world have taken to enforcing lockdowns. In India, millions have lost their livelihood and more than 200,000 have already been infected by the virus.
At the same time, people living in polluted metropolis like Delhi have marvelled at a drastic improvement in air quality; clear, blue skies and the venturing out of unusual fauna in the cityscape have been well-documented. The question is, how to retain the respite?
Surely not at the cost of the COVID-19 lockdown — with shut shops and shuttered industries, which in turn led to roads free of traffic. But what is clear is that the solution lies in action that matches the lockdown in scale and speed.
Keeping this in mind, Delhi-based non-profit Centre for Science and Environment has launched an agenda for clean air post-lockdown:
Action has to be urgent and at a scale that will make a mark:
Acting now may keep the skies blue until World Environment Day 2021.
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