ONLY ONE EARTH: REDUCING ENVIRONMENTAL POLLUTION

The Environment consists of living and non-living things found on, in and underneath the Earth. The Environment is part of us, just as we are part of it. It is everything around us.

Our treatment of this which encapsulates us hasn’t really been fair; humanity has been acting unjustly against the environment for a long time now. We are degrading it, polluting it, poisoning it and even killing it. We are ignoring one truth; the environment is part of us, killing it is to our own detriment.

The greatest threat to the environment by man can be summed up in one word ‘pollution’. Pollution has various kinds, air, water, land and each of these do have a ripple effect in the disruption of the ecosystem. For example, air pollution such as the burning of fossil fuels contributes immensely to global warming which causes climate change. Land and water pollution is causing poor yields in agriculture, reduction in the availability of potable water, toxification of the soil and water leading to the extinction of some species. Pollution is directly affecting more than 100 million people worldwide. Pollution of any sort is an eyesore, beclouding the beauty of this magnificent planet. Plastic pollution is posing an even greater threat. Plastics are non-biodegradable; this implies that they can remain in the same state for a long period of time. In fact, ever since the Belgian chemist Leo Baekeland pioneered the first fully synthetic plastic in 1907, none has ever degraded. Unfortunately these materials are used to pollute our land and water bodies. Plastic materials such as low density polyethylene (LDPE) can hinder the percolation of nutrients into the soil thereby depriving the soil of essential nutrients for plant growth. Micro plastics are already finding their way into our foods and we are already consumers of it. Marine life is also suffering greatly from plastic pollution. Fishes who ingests micro plastic finds it difficult to digest and this can be fatal to them. Larger debris of plastics in the ocean can get stuck on the arms or necks of aquatic creatures causing them great discomfort. The indiscriminate use and dump of plastic in the Environment need to be curtailed earnestly.

Every year we mark out a day to celebrate the Environment and remind ourselves of the importance of preserving it for the coming generations. The theme for this year’s World Environment Day is ONLY ONE EARTH. It is really difficult to find another habitable planet like the earth in our galaxy and even if we eventually do find one, we cannot migrate there, not in this lifetime or with our current technology. The nearest star to us is more than 4.2 light years away, now that’s a great distance. All we’ve got is Only One Earth yet about 91% of the world’s Population is breathing in polluted air every day. Trees which serve as carbon sinks are being cut down indiscriminately every day. Within a period of 22 years, about 420 million hectares of forest have been lost.

We are at the brink of an ecological collapse; unfortunately we’ve got Only One Earth. Climate change, a result of global warming is causing the loss of 1.2 trillion tons of ice in the polar regions of the world each year. We need to step up. We need to work collectively as a species to protect and preserve our planet. It is our home. Protecting Earth is our responsibility. There is no planet B, WE’VE GOT ONLY ONE EARTH.

#ClimateActionNow #WorldEnvironmentDay #AllLivesMatter #PreserveLife #Pollution #PlasticPollution #SUGCWI #UNEP #Plastics

Joshua Imoikor

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Step-Up Green Climate Warriors Initiative

Step-Up Green Climate Warriors Initiative

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Step-Up Green Climate Warriors Initiative is an Eco-smart friendly non-profit Organization in Nigeria and support of the Earth Saving Initiative founded in 2016