Published January 6, 2011
This article is from a student at Tenzer Learning Center in New York, NY. Tenzer participated in a series of visits with Pulitzer Center journalists leading up the High School News Literacy Summit at Baruch College in Manhattan.
"I was afraid to imagine the water that runs on the river," says my father. My father's name is Bin Li. He is 42 years old. Now he is a chef. "When I stood by the river, the odorous smell. The river died because of pollution."
The river is a tributary of the Minjiang River in Fujian Province of China. "Ten years ago, the river was busy with fishing that made people rich," my father said. But when I was a child, I could not see that. I always saw people throw the garbage into the river. Nothing's fixed in this world. Everything is relative. How you treat nature, nature will report back on what you have done.
The river was polluted by people. So the river reported back. The aquatic animals died or ran away from the river. Soon, there was hardly any river life left. The river was dying. By then the people were poor too.
However, people were aware that they had treated the river badly. They must do something to protect nature, to save their lives. In two year, the river was cleaner. According to Nucheng Wang, who is the Chinese Minister of Water Resources and Executive Director for the road of sustainable development of water, "Uncontrolled nature from humans changes the harmony between man and nature. [We need] to achieve sustainable economic and social development."
"I am glad to see the river become spirited," my father continues. "You must protect it, protect our life, our family." The river is alive, we are alive. I smell the fresh air that crosses the river.
Keep in your mind: How you treat the world, it will report back on what you have done with it.