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  • What Are the Top 5 Environmental Concerns for 2019?

What Are the Top 5 Environmental Concerns for 2019?

Nov 01 2018 Read 191224 Times

We all like to do our bit to help the environment. But as time goes on, we’re seeing new environmental concerns. As the new year approaches, we all need to be ready and prepared to tackle the 5 main environmental threats in 2019.

If you haven’t already, be sure to take a look at our previous posts, looking at each concern in more detail. Haven’t seen them yet? Don’t worry, this post will give you an overview of each issue and what you can do to help.

1. Biodiversity

Biodiversity is the most complex and vital feature of our planet. It is essentially every living thing and ecosystem that makes up the environment. From the tallest giraffe to the smallest microorganism, everything plays an important role in the maintenance of our world.

But with the increase in global warming, pollution and deforestation, biodiversity is in danger. Billions of species are going or have gone extinct all over the world. Some scientists, in fact, are suggesting that we are in the beginning of a 6th mass extinction, posing issues for our planet and ourselves.

Reducing our meat intake, particularly red meat, as well as making sustainable choices can help to keep our planet running smoothly.

2. Water

Water pollution is a huge concern for us and our environment. Not only is polluted water a huge financial strain but is also killing both humans and marine life. With oil spills, an abundance of plastic waste and toxic chemicals entering our waterways, we’re damaging the most valuable resource our planet has to offer.

By educating people on the causes and effects of water pollution, we can work together to undo the damage humans have caused. Laws also need to change to make pollution tougher, consistently across national borders.

3. Deforestation

We need plants and trees to survive. They provide oxygen, food, water and medicine for everyone, all over the globe. But if deforestation continues at the rate it’s occurring, we won’t have much of the valuable forestry left.

With natural wildfires, illegal logging and the mass amount of timber being harvested for commercial use, our forests are decreasing at an alarming rate. As well as reducing our supply of oxygen, the loss of forests is contributing around 15% of our greenhouse gas emissions.

To help, you can buy more recycled and organic products, limiting the amount of paper and cardboard you use.

4. Pollution

Pollution is one of the primary causes of many of the other environmental concerns, including climate change and biodiversity. All 7 key types of pollution – air, water, soil, noise, radioactive, light and thermal – are affecting our environment.

All types of pollution, and environmental concerns, are interlinked and influence one another. So, to tackle one is to tackle them all. That’s why we need to work together, as a community, to reduce the impact that pollution is having on our environment.

5. Climate Change

As pointed out by a recent UN report, without ‘unprecedented changes’ in our actions and behaviour, our planet will suffer drastically from global warming in just 12 years. Greenhouses gases are the main cause of climate change, trapping in the sun’s heat and warming the surface of the earth.

An increased ocean temperature is affecting the sea life and ecosystems habituated there. The rise in global sea levels is shrinking our land, causing mass floods and freak weather incidents across the world. If we continue as we are, the world will suffer irreversibly.

Saying no to driving more will reduce your carbon footprint, as will switching off electrical items when they’re not in use. More importantly, we need to educate the world on the effects and severity of global warming, before it’s too late.

Find out more

There are a wide range of initiatives in place to combat the biggest environmental concerns – from recycling schemes to major legislation reforms. Find out more about efforts to measure, model and mitigate air pollution in the article, ‘Air quality networks - simplifying source apportionment, supporting pollution mitigation’.

Reader comments

Roy

Aug 26 2019

I sent this to Scott Carlin of LIU who will attend the Salt Lake City UN gathering this morning: Professor Carlin, my name is Roy Willis I'm 90 years old, I was one of the design and development engineers of the oxygen generator for atomic submarines in the early 1950's. I write with concerns about our throw-away society and its environmental impact. My concerns are the ever growing tonnage rate of long term decomposition plastic enveloping our lands and seas. My further concern is the defoliate of our worlds forest. Someone once said if you wish to prevent climate change plant a trillion trees, that person was right. Atmospherically the world temperature would be reduced and air quality improved. Each country should be required to replace trees lost by fire and storm. Of course politicly this would never happen, but it's a probable cure all for the ailment. As to the plastic situation in England there exists a company that converts plastic to oil, I'm sure your aware of it GreenBeston. My point is not to advocate the use of this machine, however a like system of a larger size be designed and located strategically to areas where the effluents from the conversion can be utilized. Why my interest, to date the plastics manufactures has produced 103.4 trillion tons of the material all of which having a decomposition rate far greater than our life expectancy. It devastates our oceans and landfills, everything we do and live with involves plastic and there seems there is no end to the production. Therefore the effluents coming from a plant set to conversion would be of a lessor factor than the conditions that now exist with the environmental impact of plastic! The GreenBeston largest machine can only convert 25 tons a day, something in the order of 200 tons a day in many US states would be required on a yearly basis for many years just to clear up our present condition and the future productions. We can no longer sit back and say but the machines produce environmental effluents, time to weigh the pros and cons of effective means to save the planet and along the way scrub out the effluents. Plant design and construction would take years and plastic production doesn't stop? Weigh this " it took Edison many, many tries before there was light"! Your UN meeting should be all inclusive of world conditions. Respectfully Roy Willis

Kathy

Aug 27 2019

Thank you for your work. The polluted oceans and water shortages are what I am the most passionate about. I, of course, am passionate about the entire globe and ALL of it's problems, but grew up swimming in the ocean and have a fondness for all of my animal friends that swim. What a RIP for them to be threatened by plastic garbage.

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