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I cannot remember what time of the night it was, but the cold which engulfed the house made me recoil into the solitude of my room. The darkness was relieved by the occasional lightning as the rain poured heavily on the roof.

I thought, would this rain swallow up the house tonight? Would my birds get blown away by the wind? Would the sea rise drown us all? Would we still be here when the rain is over tonight? My mind raced from imagination to reality.

As I clutched my pillow, for the very first time, I felt the vulnerability of nature.

I felt how nature must feel when we burn forests and kill wildlife without care for their ecological impacts. I felt how nature must feel when we dump loads of wastes in the way of flowing streams without fear of an imminent flood. I felt how nature must feel when we cut down trees without plans of replacing them. I felt how nature must feel when we release in the air, very toxic substances from the plants and machines in our industries all in the frantic race to survive.

If there is any vestige of love in us, if there is a heart that truly cares deep in us, if we have hands that help and conscience that prickles, we will feel the vulnerability of nature and give our voices to save earth.

We will go to streets and schools, we will go to churches, mosques, temples and other places of worship, we will go to institutions in our communities and ask help for our environment.

We will tell our kids and everyone to stop littering the environment with papers, sachets and other thrash. We will tell our fathers, brothers, neighbors to stop cutting trees without saving for the future. We will help our women to stop cooking with solid fuels and adopt clean cook stoves. We will demand our governments to implement eco-friendly policies and take actions on climate. We will tell oil companies to stop flaring gas and polluting the atmosphere.

We will move and encourage ourselves to feel the vulnerability of nature because, when we push this earth to her limits, we would have clearly defined and activated our own doom!

Ayomide Atitebi

About Ayomide Atitebi

Ayomide serves as Country Director (Nigeria) for IDEAS – a UN accredited international environmental and public charity organisation. He is also the curator of #MyGreenStory.