It is that time of the year again. The day when everyone starts talking about Environment and Earth. But that’s not it, a single day is not enough to just talk. It’s high time we act upon it. It is the World Environment Day 2022. It is led by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), World Environment Day is celebrated on June 5 every year to raise awareness about degrading environmental conditions and to encourage people globally to take positive environmental actions, to help create a better future.
Aakash Ranison is a Climate Activist and promotes sustainable living. He is a vegan, lives a minimalist lifestyle, and strives for sustainability for a better future. He is a traveler and likes to stay at different places to understand them better.
In a conversation with Social Nation, Aakash told us about how he travels, what he thinks about sustainable living and what can people do to help save the only planet that we have.
What inspired you to start your journey?
I started traveling at a young age. As a kid, I used to dream of getting a cycle and when I finally got it, I started traveling by cycle. My first journey was from Indore to Mumbai. To date, I have cycled around 20000kms. I also enjoy walking and hitch-hiking, and so I majorly use these ways only to travel.
When I was traveling, in 2015, I visited Leh for the first time. When I was there, I saw the garbage around the place and how people were not careful, that’s when I thought about it deeply. I decided to study more about climate change and the rest is history. I have traveled, written a book about climate change, did some decisions in order to promote awareness and bring a difference.
What is it that makes you different from other travelers/vloggers?
I am not just a content creator. I travel, plan projects and then work on them fom wherever I am. I do not enjoy places by traveling and just ticking them off my bucket list. I wonder if there are others like me who are traveling slow, and doing what I do to bring a change. Most people enjoy vlogging and they do it for their happiness. I am trying to bring a difference for the planet. So I think, that’s what’s different.
What are some ways you would suggest to reduce carbon footprint?
Before taking any step, Learn about carbon footprint, understand what is this mess, and then work towards reducing the carbon footprint. I as an idividual, have taken up steps-
- I don’t travel by flights anymore as they create a lot of carbon footprint. Instead, try taking up different other public transports.
- Changing electronic devices only when necessary.
- Living minimilastically- I have only 4 pairs of clothing
- Zero plastic product in life; I am leading a plastic free life
What do you consider your biggest achievement?
I think my biggest achievement has been finding what makes me really happy. I gained clarity in life and that has made all the difference.
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He has also made plastic art installation around the country which are awakening towards Climate Change. These installations are made out of single use plastic products. As of now, there are three of them in- Spiti Valley in Himachal Pradesh, Rishikesh in Uttarakhand and Kozhikode in Kerala.
As you’re a vegan, suggest why should one go Vegan?
Being Vegan helps to save planet and it means to not be cruel to animals and other living beings. I have been a vegan for quite some time now, and that’s a decision I am glad I took.
Everyone keeps talking about Climate Change and problems in the environment which are coming because of human behavior and lifestyle. Is there something which is not talked about enough?
The problem is- there are only people talking about the Climate Change. Climate change is not just marketing and misleading people into believing something else. There are genuine ways to learn about it and get serious to bring some change in the climate. I would suggest people to not just talk, but learn about it as just talking won’t bring about the change.
What is something you’ve enjoyed the most in your journeys, and something which you’ve struggled the most with?
While traveling, I really enjoy being alone, talking to animals, plants, nature, and listening to music. As of struggle, I believe struggle is based out of mindset, so I have faced no struggle. It would only happen if you are in a comfort zone, and then stepping out would be a struggle but it would be worth the growth.
How was COVID for you? Where were you? What changed about your travel?
I was in Nasogi, Himachal Pradesh in lockdown. I used to travel fast and cover a lot of places but during COVID I realized, I prefer to travel slow. So now, I stay at places, and focus more on my detailed projects.
His first book “Climate Change” came out in 2020.
Aakash is currently in Leh. He’s staying there and working on his future projects- plastic installation and two other books. As he continues spreading awareness through his work, do follow him to know more about his work.
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Happy World Environment Day!