The moment we talk about development activities and especially their consequences on environment, we tend to think of them as ‘necessary evil’. And being aware of the environmental consequences, the approach we now seek is to do it in a way, causing less and less damage to the environment. And that’s it. But to me this is just because, we only know one way of development.
As a usual writing rule for this blog, keeping my post short and crisp, I want to illustrate this point will a very small example, I came through in one of the lecture, today.
Derby is a city, right in the middle of London and often faces flood challenges from the river Derwent, a tributary of Trent. And various flood management consultants were considering the conventional engineering approaches to limit the risk of flooding of the river, with minimum negative impact to environment at least cost and so on. But then, one of the consultants tried a completely different approach. They suggested creating a wetland and upland in an area upstream of the Derby, which is one of the main catchment areas for Derwent. The wetland will not only successfully reduces the risk of flooding, but at the same time will add much more biodiversity in the area, enhancing environmental and tourist value of the area as well.
Thus, sticking to conventions is very easy, especially for us, as engineers. But thinking not just ‘out of box’, but rather ‘without the box’, is perhaps important, when we talk about ‘sustainable development’. And the mindset change is required from “Doing Less Bad” to “Doing More Good”.
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