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Home » People & Community

Fighting Global Warming a la Balinese  

by on Friday, 11 December 20094 Comments | 2,450 views


Global warming has been the most popular and the most global problem recently and various ways have been thought, planed and implemented to fight the global warming and in the United Nation Conference For Climate Change in Nusa Dua last week came up with a proposal to adopt Balinese Nyepi (silent day) in which no activity is allowed for 24 hours, no working, no traveling, absence from using electricity, engine and other pollution-generate devices. This proposal seems quite tough to be adopted by the fast-paced developed nation but Nyepi is not the only kind of effort to fight global warming has to offer there are several simpler efforts to preserve the environment and reducing glass-house effect that have been practiced by Balinese for centuries.

Bunut Bolong tree in Denpasar – Gilimanuk road, 86 km from Denpasar, Bali

Balinese have a special ceremony to beg express gratitude to the vegetation and beg for their prosperity to the God so they can always provide their crops for mankind. The ceremony is called Tumpek Wariga or Tumpek Pengatag. Plants are seen as human relatives, as they are also part of God’s family. It is people’s duty to protect plants; moreover Balinese believe that prosperity and comfort will come around whenever the vegetation is protected and conserved.

The prohibition on cutting the big old trees which scattered all over the island due to the socio-religious significant of those trees provides great help to Mother Nature. The big old trees need tens or hundred of years to grow to reach that size, cutting those trees down is like closing a massive oxygen factory which has been operating for more than a hundred years in other words wasting the time and resource which are used by the tree to grow to reach that size.


There are also prohibition against cutting down trees during a week called Taru, this week occur every six week based on Balinese traditional calendar. Balinese believed that cutting down the trees on this auspicious week can bring misfortune and sickness. Prohibition against cutting the trees down also observed on Sunday and an auspicious day called Kajeng Kliwon which occurs every fifteen days.

All those above mentioned strategies for preserving the environment have been practiced by Balinese in their daily life, and we are more than happy to share it with the rest of the world.

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    • putu said:

      I don’t think what the Balinese practice for conserving the environment has significant impat to the earth on a global scale. Why? Bali is only a small island with merely 3 million people.

      I am sure the idea “Nyepi” for the whole planet will give time to mother earth to heal herself, but like you said, it is not easy to implement.

    • sidarta (author) said:

      I firmly believe if the rest of the world practice what the Balinese practice for conserving the environment, a better environment for our children is not just a dream

    • Bodydetoxguy said:

      the effect of Global Warming these days is even worst. i think every government should pass stricter laws on Carbon Emissions. we should also concentrate more on renewable energy sources and avoid fossil fuels.

    • Dee said:

      What you have mentioned earlier does help to conserve the environment in a way but nowadays there are lots of race and religion living within the island so we need to find ways for all of us (Balinese, Indonesian and westerners) who lived in the island to be environmentally friendly.

      Simple ways such as to have different types recyclable bins (bottles& cans, paper and waste) with explanation on what u put in it. For example: we can put this bottle& can and waste bins in public areas such as malls, street, tourist area (kuta, seminyak, sanur and etc.) and we can have the 3 diff bins at government buildings and any offices since they used and waste lots of papers.
      If any of you been travelling overseas and seen a cigarette butt bin that looks like a small pole made of steal, then it’s something that may help reduced waste laying around at tourist hot spots and cleaner environment.

      It’s something so simple that easy to understand by all ages. Government also needs to develop ways on how to inform the community about the changes for example: people from the government of education can come to schools (junior and high schools) to educate young kids about this recycle bins, interact with them give them examples on how to do it (play and act) and also any other ways on how to conserve the environment.

      Small steps like this help workers at the rubbish pit and make their job easier and help pit workers to recycle or burnt rubbish quicker so it won’t keep piling up. Right now they are trying to separate different materials from the rubbish that they can recycle and what save to burn. At the moment they don’t have the time to do each pit because more and more waste keeps on coming. One thing Bali Island is small and we don’t have extra land to keep this rubbish.

      Sometime u can even see this rubbish pit from baypass on the way to kuta. Do you know that rubbish pit could explode, because of the gas that it produced during decomposed phases? And during raining season the pit is flooded and the water from the rubbish pit flow to other area and spread disease to the community.

      Waste produced from temples after the Balinese people pray are ALOT. It must have its own bin and recycle all these and turn it into compost/ fertilizer which can help the agriculture, instead of mixing it with other waste, we can’t recycle it and it keeps piling up. Once again it helps the environment 

      There are more ways I’m sure hehehe, sorry that I wrote so much but yea personally I have a lot to say and want to help Bali to be greener 

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