July 17, 2019 | 92° F

COMMENTARY: People must take action soon to protect, conserve planet

The current dilemma at hand is people on Earth taking advantage of the planet through disgusting living habits and abuse of our natural resources.

Global warming has now evolved to a point of mass destruction on our planet. The atmosphere has become not only warmer in its climate, but the effects are taking huge tolls on our wildlife across the globe. 

Beginning with the ice caps in Antarctica, polar bears have now lost approximately 65 percent of the hard ice that provides shelter and land for them to live on. NASA revealed that the hole in the ozone layer reached the size of North America last month, according to Independent News. With that being said, the hole right above Antarctica has been deemed larger than ever.

The heat in this environment causes the ice to melt and with that we lose habitats for cold-weathered animals while increasing sea levels for the regions close to it. 

With Florida’s peninsula now nearly at 100 meters above sea level, one tsunami in that region could put the state underwater. These concerning factors will change the way we live and how the world will evolve within the upcoming years.

It does not take a scientist to understand that the statements above are alarming, and I cannot fathom the future for these animals and the sea level conditions. 

According to The Guardian, “The rate of sea level rise is currently doubling every seven years, and if it were to continue in this manner ... we would have 205 feet of sea-level rise by 2095.” That would not only sink Florida completely, but the millions of residents living there would be evicted due to these dangerous conditions. 

A chain reaction is formed when the ozone layer directly affects animals in the area as well as the water and then people. If we, as people, think that our actions will not directly impact us, then we are wrong. 

There was a trend among people globally where trash was being thrown into our oceans and polluting the sea. Thousands of damaging products like plastic were entering our oceans and harming our aquatic animals. Marine animals living in the ocean develop illnesses or die due to the consumption of garbage in their systems. 

There was a massive news outburst among Time, National Geographic and Forbes (just to name a few) earlier this year, over a large whale dying after consuming 80 plastic bags. That occurs every single day with several aquatic animals, but it is rarely spoken about.

The environment affects everyone’s lives despite the country or state you live in. The major problem that surface besides weather conditions and animal harm is the consumption rate of the rising population and the amount of goods being produced. 

People buy so many goods throughout the year without realizing that the amount of exports and resources being used in order to obtain so many products is damaging to our ecosystems. 

In order to gain better living conditions environmentally, the solution is to limit consumption through the change of lifestyles among people globally, conserve our resources by limiting trade to end excessive transportation use and create sustainable sources for the development of the Earth. 

It is now time to reflect on our actions and save the Earth in which we all reside. We must stop the overconsumption, pollution and ignorance to start helping our planet as if we would help a friend, a family member or a neighbor. We are in control of what happens to the Earth, for the betterment of our own survival and the survival of the future. 

Veronica Zerquera is a School of Arts and Sciences sophomore studying political science and journalism.


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Veronica Zerquera

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