The Ailing Planet: The Green Movement's Role | Solutions and Summary

The Ailing Planet: The Green Movement's Role | Solutions and Summary
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NCERT SOLUTIONS FOR CLASS 11 ENGLISH CHAPTER 4 The Ailing Planet The Green Movement's Role

If you're diving into Class 11 English, Chapter 4 titled "The Ailing Planet: The Green Movement's Role" is a must-read. This chapter is a wake-up call about the deteriorating health of our planet and urges us to understand the crucial role of the green movement. Are you looking for detailed insights, question answers, and explanations? You're in the right place! We cover everything from the core content of the chapter to Class 11 English Chapter 5 Question Answers as well. Whether you're a parent trying to help your child or a teacher preparing lesson plans, understanding "The Ailing Planet: The Green Movement's Role" becomes easy and interactive with our resources.

Maybe you're a student looking for "The Ailing Planet Class 11 Question Answer PDF" or keen on digging deep into "The Ailing Planet Questions and Answers." Worry not! We offer comprehensive solutions that help you grasp the essence of the chapter, making your Class 11 English learning journey smooth and effective. Not only Chapter 4 but we also have insights into Class 11th English Chapter 5 Question Answer, so you're covered for your English syllabus comprehensively. Get ready to explore the ailing planet, understand the importance of the green movement, and ace your Class 11 English exams with our well-crafted materials. Start learning now!

The Ailing Planet The Green Movement's Role Summary

The Green Movement

The Green Movement, which started in 1972, is one of the most important movements that captivated the imagination of the entire human race. At that time, the world's first nationwide Green party was founded in New Zealand.

The movement has been a great success since then. A revolutionary change has come in the perception of human beings, bringing in a holistic and ecological view of the world. There has been a shift from the understanding developed by Copernicus.

Copernicus stated in the sixteenth century that the earth and the other planets revolved round the sun. For the first time, there is a growing worldwide realisation that the earth itself is a living organism. It has its own metabolic needs and fundamental processes which need to be respected and preserved. The earth's vital signs reveal a patient in declining health. Humans have realised their ethical obligations to protect and preserve the needs of the planet.

The Concept of Sustainable Development

The concept of sustainable development was popularised in 1987 by the World Commission on Environment and Development. It defined the idea as the development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs. It means that we should pursue development for our present needs but we should be careful about the needs of the future generations as well.

Man and the Other Living Species

Man has been considered as the most dangerous being on the planet. In the zoo at Lusaka, Zambia, there is a cage where the notice reads, 'The world's most dangerous animal. Inside the cage, there is no animal but a mirror in which we see our reflection. With continuous and sustained efforts of a number of agencies in different countries, human beings are realising that they should not dominate Earth but respect it as a partner.

Man is thus learning to live in harmony with the other living species on the planet. Man's existence is shifting from the system of domination to that of partnership.

There are about 1.4 million living species on Earth that have been listed. Biologists think that there are about three million to a hundred million other living species that are still unknown.

Earth's Principal Biological Systems

The Brandt Commission was one of the first international commissions which dealt with the question of ecology and environment. An Indian, Mr LK Jha, was a member of this commission. The First Brandt Report raised the question that whether we want to leave behind a scorched and a sick environment for our coming generations?

Mr Lester R Brown, in his book, "The Global Economic Prospect', points out Earth's four major biological systems, that are fisheries, forests, grasslands and croplands. These four are the foundation of the global economic system. Besides providing us food, they provide nearly all the raw materials for industries except minerals and petroleum derived synthetics. The demand of human beings on these systems is increasing to such an unsustainable extent that the productivity of these systems is being hampered.

The excessive demand has resulted in deterioration and depletion of resources leading to the breakdown of fisheries, disappearance of forests, deterioration of croplands and turning of grasslands into barren lands. In a proteinconscious and protein-hungry world, over-fishing is common. In poor countries, local forests are destroyed to obtain fuel for cooking.

Mankind Destroys Forests

The ancient inheritance of tropical forests is now eroding at the rate of 40 to 50 million acres per year. The growing use of dung for combustion deprives the soil of an important natural fertiliser.

The World Bank estimates that a five-fold increase in the rate of forest planting is needed to cope with the expected fuelwood demand in the year 2000.

James Speth, the President of the World Resources Institute, revealed the very alarming statistic that we are losing the forests at an acre-and-a-half a second.

Article 48A of the Indian Constitution states that it is the duty of the states to make efforts to improve the environment and safeguard the forests and wildlife of the country. Unfortunately, laws are neither respected nor enforced in India. Over the last four decades 'India's forests have reached disastrous exhaustion'. India is losing its forests at the rate of 3.7 million acres a year. Large areas, officially designated as forest land, are virtually treeless.

The Menace of Overpopulation

The growth of world population is one of the strongest factors distorting the future of human society. Mankind reached the first billion mark in more than a million years of its existence. That was the world population in the year 1800. By the year 1900, a second billion was added. The twentieth century has added another 3.7 billion. Every four days, the world population increases by one million.

Fertility falls as income rises, education spreads and health improves. Development is the best method to limit the population. However, development may not be possible if population goes on increasing at this rate. The population of India was estimated to be 920 million in 1994.

The population of India is more than the entire population of Africa and South America together. More children do not mean more workers; it merely means more people without work.

The only solution to this is voluntary family planning. Population and poverty are directly proportional to each other. Thus, control of the population should be our topmost priority.

Era of Responsibility

Slowly but steadily, people are understanding the concept that the entire world should be treated as an integrated whole rather than a collection of separate parts.

For sustainable development of the world, everyone has to play one's role, even the industries Margaret Thatcher and Lester Brown suggested that Earth is not our property. It passes on from one generation to another with the hope that each generation will take care of it so as to pass it on to the next with its resources intact.

The chapter concludes with the beautiful lines of Mr Lester R Brown, "We have not inherited this Earth from our forefathers; we have borrowed it from our children."

the ailing planet the green movement's role question answer

Questions (Page No. 47)

(Understanding The Text)

Question 1. Locate the lines in the text that support the title ‘The Ailing Planet’.

Answer: The lines that support the title of the chapter are given below.

“The earth’s vital signs reveal a patient in declining health.”

“Are we to leave our successors a scorched planet of advancing deserts, impoverished landscapes and ailing environment?”

“…the environment has deteriorated so badly that it is “critical‟ in many of the eighty-eight countries investigated”.

“When this happens, fisheries collapse, forests disappear, grasslands are converted into barren wastelands and croplands deteriorate.”

“it has been well said that forests precede mankind, deserts follow”

“ …. Several species of life face extinction as a result of its destruction.”

“The environmental problem does not necessarily signal our demise, it is our passport for the future.”

Question 2. What does the notice ‘The world’s most dangerous animal’ at a cage in the zoo at Lusaka, Zambia, signify?

Answer: The inscription ‘The world’s most dangerous animal’ in a cage in the Lusaka Zoo in Zambia indicates that man has always been a completely self-centered being. Even though man is civilized and has advanced far beyond all other animals, his vision of a world based on cooperation has yet to take shape. We humans, like all other beings, want to rule this planet rather than coexist with it. That is why we frequently forget that humans cannot sustain themselves on their own. We must instead learn to live in a way that helps the earth sustain itself and thus helps us sustain ourselves.

Question 3. How are the earth’s principal biological systems being depleted?

Answer: There are four major biological systems on Earth. Specifically, fisheries, forests, grasslands, and croplands. These four systems are not only the basic systems required for survival, but they are also the primary sources of raw materials for the majority of our needs. In a nutshell, they are the foundation of the global economy. However, with rising protein demands, the demand for fish is increasing all the time. The fish stock is being depleted in order to meet this demand. Apart from supplying our food, these four systems provide almost all of the raw materials for the industry, with the exception of minerals and petroleum-derived synthetics. Human demands on these systems have reached an unsustainable level in many parts of the world, reducing their productivity. When this occurs, fisheries fail, forests disappear, grasslands become barren wastelands, and consequently, croplands deteriorate. Overfishing is a daily occurrence in a protein-conscious and protein-hungry world. Local forests are being decimated in poor countries in order to obtain firewood for cooking. Firewood has become so expensive in some areas that “what goes under the pot now costs more than what goes inside it.”

Question 4. Why does the author aver that the growth of world population is one of the strongest factors distorting the future of human society?

Answer: The author believes that the world’s population growth is one of the most powerful factors distorting future human society because a growing population not only increases food demand but also depletes current resources at an unrecoverable rate. Fertility rates are declining as incomes rise, education spreads, and health improves. As a result, development is the most effective contraceptive. However, if the current rate of population growth continues, development may be impossible. The rich get richer, while the poor have children who keep them poor. More children does not imply more workers, but rather more unemployed people. It is not advocated that humans be treated like cattle and forced to be sterilized. However, there is no alternative to voluntary family planning that does not involve some form of coercion. The choice is really between population control and poverty perpetuation.

Questions (Page No. 48)

(Thinking about language)

Question 1. The phrase ‘inter alia’ meaning ‘among other things’ is one of the many Latin expressions commonly used in English. Find out what these Latin phrases mean.

1.    prima facie

2.    ad hoc

3.    in camera

4.    ad infinitum

5.    mutatis mutandis

6.    caveat

7.    tabula rasa


1.    prima facie – at first face or first impression

2.    ad hoc – created or done for a particular purpose as necessary

3.    In-camera – doing something that the camera rolls.

4.    ad infinitum – again and again in the same way

5.    mutatis mutandis – making necessary alterations while not affecting the main point at issue.

6.    Caveat – a warning or proviso of specific stipulations, conditions, or limitations.

7.    tabula rasa – an absence of preconceived ideas or predetermined goals

Questions (Page No. 48)

(Working with words)

Question 1. Locate the following phrases in the text and study their connotation.

1.    gripped the imagination of

2.    dawned upon

3.    ushered in

4.    passed into current coin

5.    passport of the future


1.    gripped the imagination of: received much attention

2.    dawned upon: realised it for the first time

3.    ushered in: began the new idea

4.    passed into current coin: have been brought into use

5.    passport of the future: a thing that makes something possible

Question 2. The words ‘grip’, ‘dawn’, ‘usher’, ‘coin’, ‘passport’ have a literal as well as a figurative meaning. Write pairs of sentences using each word in the literal as well as the figurative sense

Answer: Write your own answer.

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