Conserving the Earth: 4 Ways the Human Race Can Have a Positive Impact

There is always a way to make things a little bit better than they were before, we merely have to put the work in and sustain our practices.

Today, the world faces overwhelming challenges as climate change and the exhaustion of our natural resources begin to affect every aspect of our daily lives. NOAA says that the average temperature of the Earth has increased by almost one whole degree Fahrenheit since 1980, leading to increases in severe weather events like droughts, hurricanes and tropical storms.

According to the Union of Concerned Scientists, this is caused by an increase of carbon dioxide and gasses like methane in our atmosphere. NOAA has concluded that since 1958, the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has increased more than twenty percent. Three-fourths of the increase in carbon dioxide comes from burning fossil fuels like coal and gasoline.

Almost all of the remaining twenty-five percent comes from deforestation and other vegetation loss. Methane concentrations have increased 148% since 1750. Methane may be a more dangerous gas for the atmosphere.

Where most carbon dioxide will break down naturally in less than a century, it takes methane twelve times as long, making methane have twenty-two times the warming potential of carbon dioxide. The problems may seem insurmountable, but here are four things everyone can do.

Go Green

The EPA’s ENERGY STAR program offers recommendations. Find ways to use less energy to heat and light homes and businesses. Use products manufactured from recycled or renewable materials. Upgrade to more efficient technology, like hybrid or electric cars.

Make a Difference

Choose a career path that puts you on the front line of battling unsustainable practices. College programs in environmental science, or related fields, including bio-resource engineering, or even engineering degrees online are all worth looking into.  These sort of majors can prepare you for a career in innovating new solutions to conservation problems around the world. Advanced degrees in programs like Environmental Policy and Law could help you tackle legislative and diplomatic challenges that protect the world from environmental misuse. A number of universities offer on-line programs in undergraduate and graduate degrees that could help you change the world.

Get Involved

Participate in a local conservation effort, fight for environmental legislation, donate money or just plant a tree. A few of the oldest and largest are listed here: Conservation International (CI) at The Sierra Club, and Greenpeace, and the Nature Conservancy.  Getting practical ideas about how to make an impact in your area can help lead everyone to success.

Be Prepared for Natural Disasters

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) suggests that everyone build a disaster supplies kit and make a family emergency communications plan. The next steps are up to you.

The truth is, we can positively impact the world with our choices every single day.  There is always a way to make things a little bit better than they were before, we merely have to put the work in and sustain our practices.

Rachelle Wilber, the author of this article, is a freelance writer from San Diego, California

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