Environmental Peace and the New Normal
by Júlia Renata Mesquita de Brito
This is the winning essay in the High School/ Private School category of Servas Brazil’s writing contest for Brazilian youth this past year. The theme of this writing contest was “Environment and Peace: What do they have to do with me?” Servas Canada provided funding for the prize awarded to Júlia for her essay.
With the arrival of the new coronavirus (COVID-19), individuals throughout society have had the need to make changes in their lives in order to avoid further contamination by the virus. These changes have impacted the relationship between humans and the environment, and has also provoked the destabilization of national peace. All of this has had numerous consequences for the world today.
It is essential to start by pointing out that the current Covid-19 pandemic has changed the habits of the world population, establishing a “new normal”, as people are now wearing masks and working from home. Due to this and also the temporary closure of industries and commercial outlets, there has been a significant transformation for the better with regard to the environment and the health of the population, since, with the absence of motor vehicles and with closed industries and commercial establishments, there has been a considerable decrease in the emission of polluting gases, contributing to cleaner and healthier air.
It is also essential to point out that the coronavirus was a great destabilizer of world peace, causing several consequences such as inequality increases in Brazil, in which the rich get richer and those with a lower income get poorer. Another consequence that can be mentioned is the increase in unemployment. At the present time, employment is being quite difficult to maintain, due to the reduction of the financial capacity of companies to keep costs and the payroll of employees up to date, making life even more difficult for many Brazilians.
Therefore, it can be inferred that there is a great need for income distribution in the country so that there is a better quality of life for people, especially the less favoured. As well, due to the pandemic, there is a greater expansion of ecological awareness as a way of establishing peace in the world.