Ever clear-cut driving forces behind increased human impact

Ever since the 21st
century, the world has suffered climate change on an epic scale, from shifts in
weather patterns, rising sea level to extreme weather events. And this change
has no sign of stopping, as the volume of greenhouse gas in the atmosphere continue
to rise worryingly and temperature leaps about 1 degree Celsius every year.
Accordingly, it is crucial that governments address the cause of the problem
and find the appropriate course of action.

 

OVERPOPULATION

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Growth in the global
population of humanity is widely recognized as one of the most clear-cut
driving forces behind increased human impact on the environment.
According to US Census Bureau (2017), over 50 years from 1960 to 2010, there is
a dramatic increase in the world population: by 1960, there was only about 3
billion of us on this planet and to 2010, the global population is over 7
billion and is estimated to reached 8 billion people in 2026. In Paul Ehrlich’s
“I=PAT” formula, following the development of industrialization, many people
are born but fewer people died thanks to the advancement of drug, health care,
food and entertainment. This “stage of high fertility and low mortality” leads
to the outburst of population (Hara, 2002, p.45). We all know the fact that the
Earth can only provide a limit amount of food, freshwater, lands, resources. In
order to survive and exist, each individual organism requires fundamental
energy from external world. Due to overpopulation, the shortage of resources is
turning to a serious problem. That means humanity needs overwhelmed the Earth’s
carrying capacity (Zenbei, 2002). Hara (2002) argued that the increase of waste
of resources and energy or environmental destruction could be a reason of pollution.
This not only destroyed the eco-systems but also affected human’s health.

 

POLLUTION &
ECONOMIC ACTIVITIES:

Development in
technology have been closely associated with population growth and
environmental degradation. As we processed through the 21st
century, the better economic development, the worse the environment (Nick,
2008). According to Nick (2008), with the advancement of technology and
economic, human action has “significantly increased the
atmospheric concentration of several gases that are closely related to the
global temperature”.  Direct
atmospheric inputs can change the operation of climate in different ways.
Chemical substances like carbon dioxide, methane chlorofluorocarbons, nitrous
oxide is the result of fossil fuel burning, cars, factories. Due to the
economic activities, these gas emissions is released and polluted the air every
day. On large scales, gas emissions are believed to be
the reason for “an enhanced global greenhouse effect and depletion of the
concentrated layer of ozone present in the stratosphere”. Moreover,
chemical fertilizers and pesticides in agricultural activities also effect the
environment in tremendous ways. Using chemicals to
controls insects, weeds and fungi enhances productivity but the run-off of
nitrogen and phosphates from overusing fertilize also pollute water resources
which threatens human’s health and the lives of other species. The industrial wastes dumped into the rivers and other
water bodies cause an imbalance in the water leading to its severe
contamination and death of aquatic species. Besides, excess use of chemicals leads to soil
erosion. Nick (2008) believed that numerous human activities for example
population density, farm subsidies mostly damage and alter the erosivity and
erodibility of the soil surface.

 

DEFORESTATION:

Deforestation is one
of the most serious problems that lead to climate change and greenhouse gas emission
(Nick, 2008). According to World
Commission on environment and development (1987), growing
of population and the decreasing availability of lands lead human to seek to
new land in forest for numerous uses. Forests have an important role in
maintaining air balance because they act like a sink-soaking up carbon dioxide
in the atmosphere and contribute oxygen which is the fundamental factors to
survival of human. Yet woodfuel demand, agricultural
and accommodation need have destroyed much forest cover. Measurement of
deforestation rates by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) (2001)
define that around 20 percentage of forest cover area is lost each year. In the
research about Vietnam deforestation, Nick (2008) argued that around 1945, Viet
Nam in pre-agricultural time is a country almost covered in forests. But about
three decades later, it lost nearly 80 per cent of forest area. The main reason for this issue is during Viet Nam War, US
army expended fertilizers and pesticides in the forest where Vietnamese army
are mostly located. Dioxins in the defoliants use were toxic to other forms of
life. It not only destroy the ecosystem balance but also detect in soil,
livestock and people after decades (Schecter et al.,2003). The numerous
consequences resulting from the loss of forest area due to deforestation range
in their scale of impacts from local to global. Biodiversity loss, climate
change and greenhouse gas are the most widely discussed results of
deforestation. The diversity of lives and species in forest is undeniable. Many species are localized in this distribution, the loss of
forest is also likely to diminish structural complexity and alter
biogeochemical cycles. Overall, there is widespread agreement that humankind,
despites the acknowledgement of forests’ benefits and its important role, still
destroyed and continued overexploiting forest resources for their need.

POSITIVE IMPACTS:

However, despite the negative impacts on the
environment, human is trying to recover the earth thanks to the advancement of
technology (Ramez, 2013). In this century, Ramez
believed innovation not only continue to develop our life but also control the
consumption of runaway resources, climate changes and ecological harms. He
affirms the global community to boost its societal investment into technology.
Moreover, Chris Dinesen Rogers (2017) believed through positive activities like
cleaning air and water, using renewable resources and protect the endangered
species, humans have reduced the amount of
pollution they create, allowing ecosystems to recover from past impacts such as
acid rain. Indeed, technology is not always environmentally damaging, in many
cases in response to a previous undesirable impact.

 

CONCLUSION

By and large, climate change is now an
on-gong problem that needs to be dealt with in a definitive manner. Working out
a false-proof solution to the situation requires the collaboration of every
country around the world. Hopefully, the crisis will be ameliorated.

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