What is your answer to the question above?
Maybe we will think first to respond to that. For example, which environment, which is far or close to our daily lives? There is already someone who takes care of and is responsible for the environment, why should we bother to care about the environment. A little dialogue shows that many of us still don't know, are aware of, understand the meaning of the environment for humans, let alone care, maybe including ourselves. Let's think for a moment.
Many people interpret the word environment related to cleanliness, greenery alone. He said cleanliness is part of faith, but dirty environment doesn't care. Environment means planting trees? Not wrong but not enough. Sometimes people plant but forget to keep it, so that there is still dry land. Some say environmental problems are due to industrial / industrial waste disposal that pollutes the surrounding environment.
Currently the issue of global warming and climate change is becoming popular. Crowds talk about the causes and effects, with a variety of understanding that is sometimes ambiguous. Without realizing that the cause is our daily activities. As a result of human activities that do not care about nature, it is not surprising that we face many natural and environmental disasters. Floods, droughts, forest fires, landslides have become a menu for our current disaster. Is rubbish a critical issue for the environment? Many do not yet know that waste has become a national problem, so it needs to be specifically regulated in Law No. 18 of 2008 concerning Waste Management. On another occasion we will talk more about this regulation.
It seems that public knowledge about the environment and its problems is still limited. It's strange if there are still doubts, is our current environment so problematic? Let's reflect for a moment. Starting the activity out of the house, we are treated to the hustle and bustle of vehicles accompanied by the smell of black smoke and suffocating the chest. Passing through narrow streets and alleys, meeting congestion, not to mention there is a pile of rubbish in a wild dump site, which is scattered to cause an unpleasant odor. For those who drive, AC use becomes necessary rather than opening a car window. Those who are motorized or users of public transportation, life mask cover is not a style but a necessity. Without realizing it, the need for clean air is increasingly critical. It could be, in the next 10 years, we leave the house needing an oxygen mask to be able to breathe.
What about water conditions? If a survey is held, it might prove that most households in Jakarta already use refill drinking water. Very few households cook tap water to drink. This symptom not only shows the practical and economical side, but also concerns the decreasing quality of tap water or ground water. The availability of clean water is increasingly difficult now. If now we wash cars and motorbikes with abundant water, for the sake of our health we are encouraged to drink 8 glasses of water a day, maybe in the next two decades, not only for washing, bathing, cooking or other things, the availability of water for drinking will be very difficult. There is an illustration, that women will lose their crown, because the hair does not grow anymore.
The illustration should make us aware of how critical the environment is today. Coupled with the garbage problem. Do we realize how much garbage is produced every day? Ranging from candy wrappers, tissues, kitchen scraps, food scraps, goods packaging, paper for school or office assignments, bottles of used drinks, drugs, chemicals, and much more. Initially it collects in a trash can, but if all Jakarta residents' trash is collected, become a terrible garbage mountain. Have you visited the Bantargebang landfill site?
Jakarta, it is said that every day the residents of Jakarta produce 6,000 tons of garbage, which if collected, in a week the garbage can meet the GBK Senayan Main Stadium. Residents of the city of Bandung had the nickname "Bandung Ocean of Rubbish". Even having claimed lives when the mountains of rubbish at the Leuwigajah landfill landslide, hundreds of people are buried in garbage. Handling waste is not easy, but it doesn't mean it can't.
Environmental problems are increasingly complicated over time. Need serious attention, not only from the government but also the community must play a role. The causes of environmental problems are not based on one factor, therefore the settlement needs to be carried out in an integrated, systemic, coordinating manner with all stakeholders. Awareness, concern and community participation are important. Adequate regulation, sophisticated law enforcement officers do not guarantee the resolution of the problem. But with the power of the people ‘people power’ then undoubtedly the quality of the environment will improve. Do not believe? Easy, flood problems. Rainfall is indeed high, but the existence of various facilities such as canals, reservoirs, culverts and others is meaningless because it is filled with garbage that we produce and disposed of carelessly.
Back to the original question, if you feel concerned about the environment, let's do something, from now on, from a small matter and from yourself. From U.S. for us. Hopefully this short article can inspire. thanks.
Dra. J. Kumala Dewi, MSc.
Sociologist who observes Environmental Education.