Environment Issues Of The Modern World


There is only one Earth although the solar system has many other celestial bodies. This is the only one that is perfectly attuned to our survival biologically. Despite this, the impact mankind has had on the planet appears to be a net negative. There was once an excuse for this situation. We were unable as a species to measure our impact on our surroundings and as a result assumed that we could not harm our home. We now know much better. In this essay some of the greatest challenges to our survival on this planet are discussed.

Rising Sea Levels

The industrial revolution pumped tons of carbon into our atmosphere. The greenhouse effect which worked in our favor for millenia to keep our planet warm enough to sustain life finally turned against us. Heat trapped in the atmosphere began to melt the polar ice caps which released huge amounts of water into the oceans. This has caused a noticeable rise in sea levels. This has been most evident in low lying islands in the Pacific oceans such as the Maldives. Here the first climate refugees have been created. They lose their homeland daily due to an environmental issue they contributed almost nothing to.

Disrupted Migratory Patterns

There are many theories about the reasons that migration has been more difficult for some animals of late. There have been changes in the seasons so that birds whose ancestors left the cold weather at a certain point for centuries may find themselves freezing to death if they wait that long. This can also harm the populations when the eggs are laid too close to the cold weather.

Overflowing Landfills

Modern society runs on things. These require packaging and this builds up over time. Most landfills are already packed to capacity. Worse yet, there are toxic chemicals in these landfills that can leach into the water supply. This affects humans as some of these are not treated before the water reaches our faucets. Fish have even experienced feminization and lower fertility rated due to exposure to chemicals that have been washed into their oceans. Many of the things we throw away include plastic components but these will outlast their purchasers by more than a hundred years.

Sadly, most scientists agree that we have reached a turning point already. Even if we were to stop all of our destructive practices immediately, the next generation will pay for our sins.

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