The pace at which industrial pollution is roaring towards a fate that will be apocalyptic for our planet is in fact a matter of grave concern. This just underscores the fact that we are not doing enough to save our planet, our future and ourselves. A major role in this disaster is played by plastics and other non-biodegradable waste. We all know that there is an urgent need to replace the use of such toxic materials and to substitute it with something that is sustainable and safe without compromising the functionality and usefulness we have come to expect (and take for granted) in products made from plastics. We are still harnessed to the plastic industry and need a means of breaking free – Hemp may be part of the solution.
In the Himalayas, every year thousands of trekkers from different parts of the world come to explore and immerse themselves in the profound bliss and the exhilarating mountains covered by the gleaming snow with its majesty and natural beauty. The trekking industry is important to the region’s economy and is welcomed but, in addition to the economic benefit to the area, the trekkers also bring their rubbish and much of it is discarded wantonly on the mountain slopes. In addition to the littering of the mountains, catering for the tourists has also resulted in an increase is rubbish throughout the area and this all has to be disposed of. The lack of infrastructure in the region means that local ‘garbage dumps’ have sprung up and have grown exponentially over the years. So, it is important now more than ever that we take steps to prevent the serene mountains from turning into a garbage dump and protect the sanctity of nature.
This is where the need of hemp cultivation comes into play, for thousands of years this has been part of the Himalayan crop, it is in fact considered as one of the five most sacred plants. Hemp cultivation can help eradicate plastic as the hemp can be used as a ‘bioplastic’ to replace manmade equivalents. The cultivation of hemp also acts as a detoxifying agent for soil, it inoculates nitrogen and oxygen into the soil which further enriches the soil while also removing the harmful chemicals and toxic waste that has been embedded into it over time. Since the legalisation of hemp cultivation in Uttarakhand, 1000’s of acres of barren land has been transformed into hemp cultivating farms and garbage dumps have been cleared to give way to a new sustainable tomorrow that can soon transform into a natural habitat for cultivation of hemp.
Garbage disposal plays a very significant role in keeping our environment healthy and safe, it is of utmost importance that we prevent the clustering of garbage dumps and promote the cultivation of crops that are environment friendly and depict properties that evolve and heal nature. The use of hemp to replace man-made and/or fossil fuel derived plastics will go a long way to help reduce rubbish
We need to rethink and revaluate our relationship with nature and its components, the alarming increase in garbage dumps in the Himalayas is a wake-up call that can be calamitous if overlooked. Hemp cultivation not only helps the economy but also is a factor for generating much needed revenue and gives us a paradigm of an alternate future, a means to better and brighter tomorrow, for the cultivators as well as the consumers.