HERE in Trinidad and Tobago, we are not shielded from the effects of climate change and it is important that citizens take steps to preserve our environment. Global warming, the name given by scientists for the gradual increase in temperature of the Earth's surface, has worsened in the past two decades.
There is a great deal of evidence that indicates that most of this warming has been caused by human activities. We have altered the chemical composition of the atmosphere through a build-up of greenhouse gases – primarily carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide.
If we do nothing to reverse the effects of climate change, rising global temperatures will cause sea levels to rise and alter local climate conditions, affecting forests, crop yields, and water supplies. It may also affect human health, animals, and many types of ecosystems. Deserts may expand and some of our countryside may be permanently altered. A carbon footprint is a measure of the impact our activities have on the environment, and in particular climate change. It relates to the amount of greenhouse gases produced in our day-to-day lives through burning fossil fuels for electricity, heating and transportation etc. The phrase is now commonly used as a way of measuring the amount of greenhouse gases produced by humans.
To reduce your carbon footprint, there are plenty of small areas where you can make some significant changes. You will be benefiting the environment without having to give up anything you really need.
Here are some easy ways to reduce your carbon footprint:
It is important to drink plenty of water each day. Yet you often see people carrying around plastic bottles of it.
Instead of getting a new bottle each time you drink water, get some reusable containers. You can fill them up drink them everywhere you go. There are several sizes, colours, and designs to choose from. This will significantly reduce the amount of plastic that is in our environment. If you prefer to buy bottled water at least recycle the bottles you use.
When you complete projects in your home such as remodelling and painting you will likely have left over supplies. Paint is a substance that you don't want to dump in landfills due to the chemicals found in them. They can get underground and do a great deal of damage. A better alternative is to donate that left over paint and supplies to a person or charity that needs it.
Left over paint can be mixed with many others that people have donated and used to paint houses, schools, fences and abandoned buildings. This is a great way to prevent those leftovers from being wasted and from harming the environment.
|Other Home Pollutants||
Make sure you properly dispose of pollutants that can be very dangerous for the Earth. It is common for people to change their motor oil at home to save money and to get the job done quickly. Never pour that oil on the ground as it will get into the soil, robbing the ground of essential nutrients.
When oil gets into the water it can result in aquatic life dying. This is very serious as it will upset the balance of the natural food chain. It can result in problems in that part of the water decades after it has been dumped there.
It is also possible for the oil to get into drinking water if you aren't careful.
|You can also develop the following environmentally safe habits:||
– Turn off lights.
– Turn down and use the half load setting on washing machines and tumble dryers.
– Don’t boil more water in the kettle than you need to.
– Fix leaks as these are not only wasting water but also energy if they’re from a hot water source.
– Recycle more!
|Newsday News article entitled: "Easy ways to reduce your carbon footprint "|
Thursday, March 11 2010