NCERT Solutions for Class 11 English Chapter 8 - The Ailing Planet : The Green Movement's Role

Question 1:

Bring out the facts that support the title, ‘The Ailing Planet........’.


The planet on which we live is, indeed, ailing. It is in poor health. Its forests, fisheries, grasslands and croplands have been destroyed. Many of its species have almost become extinct. The land, rivers and seas have been polluted. The fertility of soil has gone down. All natural resources have depleted badly. It is, indeed, an ailing planet.

Question 2:

What does the notice, “The world’s most dangerous animal”, at a cage in the zoo at Lusaka, Zambia, signify ?


There is no animal in the cage. There is only a mirror where one can see oneself. It makes one realise that the world’s most dangerous animal is none but man himself. And this indeed is very true. Man has done such a big harm to this planet as no other animal could. He has destroyed forests, fisheries, grasslands and croplands. He has made many species almost extinct. He hunts and kills more than he needs. Thus the mirror in the cage signifies man’s cruelty and thoughtlessness.

Question 3:

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


The earth has four principal biological systems. They are fisheries, forests, grasslands and croplands. They form the foundation of the world’s economy. They supply food for us. They provide almost all the raw material for industry. But sadly, they are being depleted. And it is happening at a very fast rate.

Question 4:

Why does the author agree that the growth of world population is one of the strongest factors distorting the future of human society ?


The world population has grown at a very fast rate. It has already touched 6 billion mark. It has endangered the future of human society. It has resulted in too much pressure on natural resources. The world’s forests, fisheries, grasslands and croplands have depleted alarmingly. Unless determined steps are taken to check the increase of population, this earth of ours will soon become unlivable for human society.

Question 5:

‘We have not inherited this earth from our forefathers; we have borrowed it from our children.’ Discuss.


We have not inherited the earth from our forefathers. Rather, we have borrowed it from our children. And we have to give it back to them in good form. We should take from it as much as we give back to it.

Question 6:

Discuss the problems of overpopulation that directly affect our everyday life.


Poverty is the direct result of overpopulation. It is because of overpopulation that our natural resources are being depleted. Unemployment is on the increase. More children do not mean more work. It means more people without work. The problems of poverty and unemployment can never be solved if we don’t check the growth of population.