London, Dec 13 (ANI): A new crusade against drugs is seeing cops telling people that every time they snort cocaine, a part of the rainforest dies.
Police believe that relating drug use to environmental damage will appeal more to the youth than just the clichéd "say no to drugs" slogan.
And so the cops have joined hands with Greenpeace to tell people that for every gram of coke made, almost four square metres of rainforest are destroyed.
"The cocaine trade is destroying the rainforest. Young people don't tend to listen to the police, but they might listen to Greenpeace and they might listen to their peers," Times Online quoted Chris Pearson, drug analyst at the Metropolitan police's intelligence bureau, as saying.
The government is also supporting the campaign.
Schools minister Vernon Coaker said: "Teaching young people about the devastating environmental consequences of the drugs industry is one way we can tackle drug usage, though we need to balance this with giving young people clear information and advice on the other effects of drugs."
Illegal coca plantations often cut down Virgin rainforests, while poisonous chemicals are used in the processing of the leaves. Unwanted chemicals that are cast off in the forests and its rivers poison rare plants and animals.
However, environmentalists feel the latest move is just a small step and much more needs to be done to save the wild.
John Sauven, executive director of Greenpeace, said: "Just telling young people that using cocaine is bad doesn't work.
"You need to change teenage culture and point out that it has all sorts of consequences. Then they start talking about it more loudly and you could get into that fur coat situation."(ANI)