New Delhi: We all know that rivers are an important natural resource playing a critical role in many aspects of human life. Besides being valuable sources of water, these water bodies – rivers and lakes – are valuable features of our natural landscape.
Sadly, rivers, lakes and other water bodies in every country now face an array of severe threats associated with climate change, pollution, and industrial development. However, it is our duty to protect and preserve our rivers that serve many purposes from drinking water to wildlife habitat, and from defending to a source of hydropower to drive machinery.
Here are a few steps you can take right away to help protect and improve the health of our rivers:
- Use biodegradable cleaning products at home and on the river. This is because all of the cleaning products get washed down the drain and back to the rivers.
- Plant a tree - restoring riverbank trees and shrubs is a vital step toward improved water cleanliness and more stable riverbanks for our rivers. Trees also provide shelter for aquatic animals.
- At home and outside, pick up trash and litter and throw it in the recycling or garbage cans. Remember, lots of trash is washed down storm sewers and then back to the rivers.
- Never flush random trash down the toilet, instead just throw it in the trash can.
- Ensure that you turn off the tap when you brush your teeth so that the precious water isn’t going straight down the drain.
- If you have pets, try washing them on the lawns so that excess water will get absorbed by the plants.
- Limit use of pesticides as they are typically water soluble. And when you use these chemical substances on your garden or lawn, the runoff can leak into the ground, thereby spoiling aquifers or nearby rivers.
- Turn off lights when not in use and unplug chargers. This will help you and your family save money and water.
- In the wild, avoid washing any dishes or going to the toilet near the river.
- Help spread the word about river conservation through social media such as Facebook, Twitter. For instance, you can just link to helpful information using few appropriate words or simply paste the link of the article into your post.
World Rivers Day is a global celebration of rivers, observed every last Sunday in September. This year, the event takes place on September 25, 2016. World Rivers Day highlights the many values of rivers and strives to increase public awareness of the importance of the waterways as well as the many threats confronting them.