My topic is “Environment” and I think that this is nowadays one of the most discussed topics on the world and it´s also a very important topic. There are still some new threats which the scientists come every day with. Many people doesn´t care about environment but in my opinion we shouldn´t trifle with it because the global changes and the environment changes could affect us already in a few decades. We should be aware of the environmental problems and do something beneficial for the Earth in order to survive next century.
The environment is basically made up of the atmosphere, the hydrosphere and the lithosphere. Environment is simply all around us, the nature, people who we live with, town we live in or for example animals, water, air and many others. Because we have a highly developed brain, we learn quickly and can plan for the future. People began to change the balance of the environment in our favour already millions years ago. The number of people on the Earth is growing each year making our environmental problems worse. The environment jointly with the Earth gives us the opportunity to live our lives here and we should be aware of that and do something in order to repay the Earth for this great opportunity.
The mankind and the Earth have developed a lot and the environment nowadays is not as healthy as it was. The industrialization has been leading to different pollutions. The Earth isn´t definitely health nowadays.
As a result of developed population there are different types of pollution such as water pollution, air pollution, sea pollution or for example noise pollution. We produce lots of waste in the home and toxic chemicals from industrial processes. Often we don´t treat our waste in the way it really should be, we are not enough aware how the waste should be treat and sometimes we don´t even want to be aware of that. Some of us just don´t care about what will happen with the waste they throw in the nature. The home waste must be disposed safely and either must toxic chemicals from industrial processes. Unfortunately, it´s less expensive to dump waste and toxic chemicals into rivers or holes in the ground than to dispose of them safely.
Chemicals are used to kill pests in agriculture, to increase production and as a result of the usage, our ground is sick and polluted and it causes death of not only little pests but also of other animals and plants. Also humans cause ground pollution. Some of us are responsible for illegal dumpings. It´s disposal of waste in an unpermitted area.
Illegally dumped wastes are primarily non hazardous materials that are dumped to avoid either disposal fees or the time and effort required for proper disposal. Sites used for illegal dumping vary but may include abandoned industrial, residential, or commercial buildings, or private property and infrequently used alleys or roadways. There are significant health risks associated with illegal dumping. They can be very harmful because they may be easily accessible to people, especially children. Additionally, run off from dump sites containing chemicals may contaminate wells and surface water used as sources of drinking water.
Toxic waste from industrial processes leaks into waterways. Factories often use rivers or water-places as place for their sewage and bother themselves building a sewage treatment plant so the sewage is very often mistreat and full of chemicals.
The air pollution is also one big danger for the humankind. This pollution is mostly caused by emissions of exhaust fumes (which include for example carbon dioxide) and emissions of the industrial processes which are held in big factories. We can help by decreasing our carbon footprint. Scientists use this term to describe the effect we have on the environment in our daily lives. It is called the carbon footprint.
It´s greenhouse gas emissions cause by a person. The culprit is of course carbon dioxide , a dangerous pollutant. The foot print comes directly from burning fossil fuels electricity, heat and transport. It is also created indirectly from the things that are produced for us.
How to reduce our carbon footprint?
- Hang out the washing instead of tumble drying it.
- Switch off lights when not required.
- Share your car journey with someone else and plan how often you use the car.
- Turn down the hot water when not required.
- Fill the kettle with only as much water as you need.
- Buy locally grown fruits and vegetables because the transport of goods from distant places produces lots of carbon dioxide.
- Go on your foot or use public transport when needed instead of going by a car.
Toxic waste kills fish in rivers, lakes and the sea. Wastes getting into our drinking water or chemicals getting into our food cause illness and diseases.
Laws and regulations must be followed by all countries and must be updated as we get more knowledge.
- Global warming
The earth has a thin atmosphere that is like a transparent blanket that keeps us warm. In a process called the greenhouse effect high energy radiation from the solar system is trapped by gases such as carbon dioxide. This heat energy keeps Earth temperatures too high to support life.
Carbon fossil fuels such as coal are burnt to produce energy. This process produces large amounts of carbon dioxide that goes into the atmosphere.
More carbon dioxide means a larger greenhouse effect so the Earth´s overall temperature is increasing. This could cause riding sea levels, unpredictable weather in the form of flooding or drought, hurricanes and large loss of life.
Change the way we produce energy and produce less carbon dioxide. Instead we can use more hydroelectric, wind or solar energy. We should decrease usage of finite resources in order not to use them up. There are still some renewable resources like solar energy or wind energy.
- The ozone hole
Scientist discovered that ozone layer in the atmosphere over the Antarctic was missing. In other populated places such as Australia it was very thin The ozone layer, about 30 km above the Earth´s surface , absorbs dangerous ultra violet radiation which is dangerous for humankind.
We release ozone damaging chemicals in industrial and domestic activities. Some of them destroy the ozone molecule and UV reaches the Earth´s surface.
UV causes damage to the DNA or cells and various cancers can result especially after sunbathing. Sheep at high altitude in the Andes are often blinded by UV.
Ban the use of dangerous chemicals in aerosols, refrigerators and car air conditioning.
- Acid rain
Today rain contains harmful acid which can damage the environment. Ph shows on a scale how acid or alkaline the environment is. Creatures in lakes, rivers and in the soil often live in a narrow range of pH.
Coal burning in power stations releases sulphur dioxide into the atmosphere. This mixes with water in clouds and acid rain is formed. Car exhaust gases add other acids.
Acid rain in lakes kills fish and destroys leaves on trees and other plants.
Remove the sulphur dioxide from chimneys of power stations and use alternative sources of energy.
- Cutting down the rainforests – deforestation
As humans we like to eat meat and the modern trend for beef burgers has increased the demand for more cattle and more space worldwide. We also use more hard wood for furniture.
Tropical rain forests are being burnt and cut down because people need more land for agriculture. This is happening in the Amazon basin in Brazil and SE Asia.
Many plants and animals will become extinct. The forests absorb carbon dioxide in the process called photosynthesis. Without trees carbon dioxide levels will increase.
Alternative sources must be found for food and wood.