Humans are the most significant agents of environmental change.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Humans
are the most significant agents of environmental change. Humans affect the
Earth in many ways. One way in which we are harming the Earth is by altering
the habitats of different species, thus increasing the amount of species going
extinct. We are also harming the environment when we burn fossil fuels. Cutting
down the trees that we have that are meant to help protect our climate by absorbing
carbon dioxide aids in sending heat trapping gases into our atmosphere. Trees
are one of the many parts of the environment that helps in guarding us from
harm’s way. Trees help settle out and trap dust, pollen and smoke from the air.
Trees absorb carbon dioxide and theoretically harmful gasses, such as sulfur
dioxide. Trees also release oxygen to us and one large tree is said to provide
oxygen for about four people a day.

We
already know that people are the greatest factor in climate change. Most of the
climate change come from the burning of fossil fuels in cars, factories and
electricity manufacture. The gas that is accountable for the greatest amount of
warming is carbon dioxide, or CO2. The solution to our climate change problem
would be to get humans of off planet Earth, but that however cannot happen. “Different
greenhouse gases have very different heat-trapping abilities. Some of them can
even trap more heat than CO2. A molecule of methane produces more than 20 times
the warming of a molecule of CO2. Nitrous oxide is 300 times more powerful than
CO2” (NationalGeographic.com). The rapid warming and cooling of the Earth is
being examined and studied every day. There are also natural causes of climate
change, humans are just speeding up the natural cycle in which everything
should be occurring. Continental drifts, volcanoes, ocean currents, Earth’s
tilt, and comets and meteorites are the more natural processes of Climate
change that transpires on Earth.

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Humans
consumption of energy and the use of materials we have also affect our
environment. People that ae in highly developed countries consume more
resources than those that are in moderately developing and low developed
countries. The reason for this is because people in highly developed countries
like the United States of America, have more items we don’t necessarily need.
We have more clothes, electronics and miscellaneous items that we don’t really
need or use. Other countries that are not that developed like countries in
Africa and Pakistan don’t have access to the things we have access to, the
poverty level is so low they only have what they need and often they don’t even
have that. A larger population also consumes more resources, which has a
greater impact on environmental damage than a smaller population. Whether you
live in a highly developed country or a low developed country, the amount of
resources every person consumes vary. Consumption is based on economic status,
culture, and other economic and social factors. However, one child in a highly
developed country has more environmental impact than twenty children in a
developing country.

There
are many government policies and regulations that are implemented to address
the major causes of climate change. Climate change is being closely monitored through
many different observations. The rising of the temperature, the glaciers that
are melting and the rising sea levels are a few that are being observed in
connection to climate change. The rising of sea levels is an indicator that the
Earth is warming. There are many people on Earth who live on or near the coast,
so the levels of the sea rising can be a detrimental impact to those people.
Sea level can rise for two reasons, both reasons are directly related to the
planet being warmed. When ice on land, such as mountain glaciers melt, that melted
water contributes to sea level rise. When the water gets warmer it expands
which makes the sea level rise as well. Using renewable energy, weatherization,
using energy efficient appliances, and reducing water waste aids in helping
climate change. Climate change policies include tradable permits, voluntary
agreements, and different taxes and charges.

      

 

 

There are many solutions
for the long-term sustainability regarding climate change. Everyone should take
part in helping the environment, it stats with one person. In order for it to last,
we all have to commit to it, it may be difficult, but it will save our planet. The
first solution is the elimination of the burning of coal, oil and natural gas.
This is possibly the utmost discouraging solutions. Another solution would be
the buildings that are being built throughout the world. They contribute about
1/3 of the greenhouse gas. Investing in thicker insulation and other
cost-effective, temperature-regulating steps can save money in the long run. For
the changes to be sustainable, they have to be cost effective and realistic. Investing
in new infrastructure, or completely upgrading current highways and
transmission lines, would assist in cutting greenhouse gas emissions and initiative
economic growth in developing countries. It would however take a lot of greenhouse
gas emissions, cement, work, and time to construct these new roads and buildings.
Moving closer to home is another way we can sustain climate change globally. “Transportation
is the second leading source of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S. (burning a
single gallon of gasoline produces 20 pounds of CO2). But it doesn’t have to be
that way. The easiest way to cut back on greenhouse gas emissions is simply to
buy less stuff” (scientificamerican.com). If we do purchase a car, we should be
thinking greener. For example, buying a car that will last long and have the least
impact on the environment is something to look out for. This can be a used car or
simply one with fuel efficiency. Also, when purchasing items such as food, you should
buy more which sometimes means less. Buying in bulk can reduce the amount of packaging,
plastic and other potentially harmful things that come along with shopping.