Friday, June 26, 2009


I have been meaning to write this for at least a week now. It is about the power of 'a single drop' and is with respect to pollution. It is difficult to explain but some analogies could help.

What is common between 'A thousand drops of water', 'A hundred ants', 'A colony of bees' and 'Waves rolling together'? Of course, the commonality is that these are multiple entities of same type. But if you look at these examples a little more carefully, it becomes clear that though a single entity in these groups is not very significant, when they get into these groups, their effectiveness increases multifold!

All that is fine but what has that got to do with pollution - you ask? Think of yourself (an individual man / woman) as that single entity, an ant or a bee or a single wave, and the analogy becomes apparent now. If not now, it will be once you reach the end - so read on.

I have been traveling almost constantly this week, to various places in Chennai on my 2-wheeler or in my car. At every opportunity where I had a little over 30 seconds stop at a traffic signal, I switched off my vehicle engine thereby saving some precious time & money. One might laugh now reading about the 'precious' phrase ... but I really mean it.

From my home to office, there are at least 3 traffic signals where I stop for over 30 seconds each. So, that is approximately 1.5 minutes one way and a total of 3 minutes during a regular working day. Added to that, I was out visiting the dentist and to my bank this week, going via Anna Salai (anybody in Chennai knows how crazy that drive would be), giving me an extra whopping 15 minutes during the total 4 hour driving time!!

So, my total savings on petrol usage last week alone has been 30 full minutes!

Now imagine about 1 million vehicle users in Chennai city [let's talk small numbers now :)] and if even 1/3rd of them stop their vehicle engines like I did, we have about 1 million minutes per day & 5 million minutes for a regular 5-day working week!! Now do you see how tiny drops add up?

We humans have been burdening Mother Earth too much with so much of our own non-sense. Let's at least save some burden for the trees we are chopping off so non-chalantly. If not for the green cover on Earth, we would have wiped ourselves out much earlier I think.

For people really who want to do something about eco-friendly stuff, the start has to be with themselves. Some guidelines are in these sites:!&id=215122

Hope to see you join the drive soon :-)

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