Natural Environmental Degradation is an important issue to be discussed. Nature is like our mother and we are like children of her. The word nature derived from the Latin word “natura”, or essential qualities, and in ancient times it meant “birth”. In brief, nature is the natural, physical, or material universe or world. It may refer to living plants and animals, weather, geological processes, physics such as energy and matter.
Nature and Environment
The environment is all the things around us and the natural world makes up the environment. The natural environment refers to all the living and no living things occurring naturally. In this term, human impact is kept under a certain limited level.
Environmental Issues in Nature
Environmental issues mean the harmful effects of human activities on nature and the environment. Nowadays humans play violent roles in the natural environment for only their usury. We human beings are destroying habitats and endangering the lives of future generations through our actions. There are thousands of environmental problems that we are creating directly or somehow indirectly. Some of them are described below.
1. Climate Change
Climate change is being changed gradually at an alarming rate.NASA says that global temperatures have risen by 1.7 degrees Fahrenheit since 1880, which is directly related to a reduction in Arctic ice of 13.3% per decade. The effects of climate change are beyond description, like sea-level rise, global warming, frequent storms, cyclone, etc. All of them have huge influences on plant and animal life.
2. Air Pollution
Air pollution has become a dangerous issue in populated cities. Urban areas peoples are facing direct exposal of polluted air. Emissions of carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide are increasing day by day for increasing vehicles. It also influences some other environmental issues, like water pollution. It causes many health issues such as skin irritation, bronchitis, asthma, etc.
3. Ozone Layer Depletion
The ozone layer works as an umbrella that protects living organisms from harmful UV rays and other dangerous rays. This depletion causes the release of harmful chemical compounds to the earth. Which causes skin irritations, skin cancers, eye disease, etc. It also affects wildlife as well as animal life.
Deforestation means a random cutdown of trees unnecessarily. People cut down trees to make their houses, furniture, fuel, and fancy tools. Every country must have 25% of forestland. But for this problem forestlands are destructing. increasing levels of deforestation. Deforestation causes loss of habitation for many species, extinction of many wild species, decrease the production of oxygen as well as carbon dioxide consumption.
5. Water Pollution
The other name of water is life. Any species of earth can not even think of their life without water. Though there has no shortage of water yet drinkable water is not enough. Therefore human activities pollute water every day. That’s why groundwater levels are decreasing every year. Water pollution has harmful effects on humans as well as animal health such as many water-borne diseases such as diarrhea, cholera, skin irritations, and so on.
6. Population Growth
Population growth is a major reason for environmental degradation. This overpopulation rate is creating different types of environmental pollution for many years. Such as a lack of fresh water, loss of habitation for wild animals, overuse of natural resources, and even species extinction. Increasing urbanization for the development of their lifestyle is destructing natural environment. Villages are losing their beauty. Cities are being unsuitable for living.
7. Waste Production
The overpopulation produces over wastes. They are dumping these wastes here and there that’s why air, water, the soil is polluted. Excess number of mills, factories release hazardous wastes to the river without proper treatment of that effluent. That’s because rivers are getting dead and losing their aquatic biodiversity.
8. Genetic Modification of Crops
People use more chemicals for the production of more food. They use genetically modified crops to fulfill their needs. Like hybrid vegetables. These chemicals and hybridization systems result in adverse effects on the environment.
Some Recent Issues Regarding Environmental Degradation
1. Amazon Rainforest Fire
Amazon is the largest tropical rainforest in the world. It produces 20% of the world’s oxygen and thus it is called the “lungs” of the Earth. Since many years this rainforest is burning but it comes to light since 2013. But from the beginning of 2019, these fires occur devastatingly and till January 2020 and release carbon dioxide. The additional release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere contributes crucially to the total amount of carbon dioxide. Because of the current scenarios of global climate change, the environmental scientists are concerned about the chances of the Amazon reaching a “tipping point” where it would die out never to be retained. The main reasons of this fire are deforestation, farming in the jungle, road choked streams, etc.
2. Coronavirus Disease (COVID -19)
Covid-19 is the most terrific health issue for the twentieth-century. The word “coronavirus” is derived from Latin word corona which means “Crown” or “Wreath” ’It is an infectious disease and primarily spread between people during close contact. The outbreak was first identified in Wuhan, China. And rapidly this disease spreads throughout the world. More than a million people have died already. There are no vaccines or antiviral drugs to treat this human infection.
More or less we are responsible for this tremendous crisis. Cause it can spread through the air, soil, and somehow water. For those reasons, air pollution, water pollution, soil pollution are responsible which are done by us. To keep ourselves safe from this deadly disease we can follow a word that is “ SMS”, which means
Consequences of Environmental degression
The consequences of these environmental degradations are beyond explanation and most of them are already have discussed. It has changed our environment to the darker zone and our lifestyle also. We are much dependent on technology rather than natural things. With some advantages this technology making our environment polluted and unsuitable to live. Besides extreme weather conditions, famine, poverty, chronic and acute medical illnesses, loss of species, and so on are included.
Lessening the Impacts of Environmental Degradation
Depending upon the damage some environments may never recover. But we can try to lessen the impacts of environmental degradation. There are some ways which can help to decrease degradation in our environment. Some of these are:
- Three ‘R’ method that means Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle waste material.
- Limited use of plastic
- Plant tree more and more
- Conserve energy
- Should follow Environmental Laws
- Talk with others about the impacts of environmental degradation and so on.
It is high time to save our natural environment. We should give enough time for the welfare of our nature. We should stop deforestation and increase afforestation, reduce , reuse, and recycle things, save water, electricity, stop all types of pollutions and we should do eco-friendly practices. If we do not take proper steps as soon as possible, human beings will come to extinction.
Tarannum Rahaman Mim
Department of Soil and Environmental Sciences
The University of Barishal.