They say that every cloud has a silver lining, and as we’d all agree that the current coronavirus situation is casting a shadow on our everyday lives, it’s good to look for the positives hidden within it.
Lower the curve
Now we know that experts have calculated that the drastic limitations we are seeing today will not solve the issue. They are just made so that the health system can actually deal with the infections. For our society to become immune, 60-70% of the population has to become immune either by infection or by a vaccine (which is nowhere in sight). So really the governments are trying to release waves of infections and this means these drastic measures will last for a long time.
BY THE WAY: Nobody knows if this really works because it is the first time for all of us. It could last for MOST OF THIS YEAR or more.
Quite apart from human positives such as an increased sense of togetherness, solidarity, resolve and also a heartening sense of humour that helps us get through moments such as these – not to mention the much-needed chance to take a little rest from our hectic modern lives – there is also a positive impact on the natural environment around us.
The large reduction in the number of flights crossing the air, cars filling the streets and roads, as well as ships sailing around is having an almost immediate impact on the environment. The immense impact caused by human transport and tourism is greatly reduced, giving nature a chance to clean the air, waterways and even land spaces that suffer from littering and other forms of pollution.
There are fewer emissions, vapour trails and also less turbulence caused by cruise ships and Vaporetto taxis in vulnerable places such as Venice. Already, the water is looking clearer and birds are returning there, while in densely populated areas like China, the air quality is improving in the absence of the usual traffic jams.
Having fewer people around also reduces the strain on urban infrastructures and the polluting thereof, while concentrating most people at home has also greatly diminished the amount of fuel and other forms of energy used in daily commuting, business and leisure travel. Shopping is down too, and while this is not good news for retailers it is allowing many habitual consumers to save and reassess a little.
As we spend more time at home and put less strain on the environment, we are able to slow down our hectic pace of life a little and use this as an opportunity to rest, interact more with our loved ones and rekindle a gentler way of living while nature heals itself in the absence of our daily onslaught.
Naturally, we all want the coronavirus situation to end and things to go back to normal, but maybe this is also a wake up-call that inspires us to find a better balance between our standard of living and quality of life. Stay safe and look after one another!