Everyone should be aware of the seven greatest environmental threats to the Earth. You may be able to take steps to ensure that these threats are eliminated.
According to the World Economic Forum’s Global Risks Report 2019, environmental concerns are now more prominent than concerns over economic problems as the top risks that people face. Climate change has been cited as a major concern in the increase in extreme weather events. Scientific American explains that climate change is increasing natural disasters like droughts. Global Risks Report 2018 warned of the dangers of extreme events that could disrupt food production or cause famines. Related Articles Pictures of Global Warming’s Impacts Pictures of Current Environmental Problems Air Pollution Pictures
NASA Confirms An Increase in Carbon Dioxide Levels NASA confirmed that carbon dioxide levels have increased from 280 parts per Million to 400 parts per Million in the past 150 year. The causes were cited as the burning of fossil fuels, intensive agricultural and other human activities. Global Temperatures are rising by one degree Celsius, due to the increase in carbon dioxide levels. This has caused global temperatures to rise by one degree Celsius from pre-industrial levels. NASA says that in addition to increasing extreme weather, the rise in temperatures has led to an increase of sea levels of 1-4 feet from 2010 and caused Arctic ice cap shrinkage, which has increased the lengthening season.
Extinction of Species, and Biodiversity loss
Global Risks Report also states that biodiversity loss caused by species extinction poses a risk to not only the environment but also the world economy. The alarming rate at which species are disappearing is occurring worldwide is alarming. According to the World Wildlife Fund, the human-caused rate for species loss is between 1,000 and 10,000 times the normal rate. With more laws being passed to protect species, it is recommended that there be greater preservation efforts and strategies. The Guardian and University of Wisconsin–Eau Claire report that intensive agriculture, unsustainable fisheries, wildlife poaching and acid rain are all threats to thousands of species. Consumer demand is a major factor in many species’ extinctions.
There is hope for endangered species. American’s national symbol, the Bald Eagle, is an example in successful preservation of endangered species. In 1960 there were only 487 nesting couples of baldeagles remaining. There were 69,000 bald-eagles living in the United States as of 2015.
Bald Eagle population increases This indicates how endangered species can be saved. Each year, more endangered species are added to the animal and wildlife list. It makes more sense to be better land stewards and not encroaching onto forests or wetlands.
Water and Air Pollution
Global Risks Report 2018 names air, water, land, and soil pollution as some of the top risks. In the last century, industrialization has made pollution an unwelcome side effect. Although there are nine types, the most dangerous forms of pollution are air and water. World Air Pollution 92% Of the world’s population lives in areas contaminated with air, which is responsible for 11.6% of all recorded deaths worldwide. The air quality in cities is especially poor, and it is only going to get worse as people move to cities.
Air Pollution has been in decline for significant amounts since 1990. The 2019 EPA annual report, Our Nation’s Air, reveals that the United States’ air pollution had been steadily declining since 1990. The significant declines in air pollutants contrast starkly with the increase in human activity, energy use, and human activity.
Water Pollution. The Global Risks Report 2018, 2018 shows that microplastics are found in 83% tap-water around the globe. Plants and animals can be killed by chemicals from industries and agriculture.
Nutrient Pollution. In addition to nutrient polluting from fertilizers, households and other sources, these pollutants end up in lakes and ponds and the oceans to cause over-nutrition. 500 dead zones have been created by nutrient contamination and global warming in the oceans, Mongabay reported.
Consumer Pollution. Many hazardous chemicals are produced by various products, and many of these chemicals are also used by consumers. Heavy metals continue their contaminating of land, water and air. If everyone in the world recognizes that there are ways to make the world a better place, and take action, then they have the power to change how every dollar is spent.
According to the WWF, water scarcity is one of the top environmental threats. A water scarcity affects all continents. The earth’s surface covers 70% water but only 2.5% is water that humans, plants and animals can survive on, according to Deutsche Welle (DW).
Water Loss: Water shortage can be caused by physical dehydration. It is usually due to overuse or carelessness. People extract water from groundwater-reservoirs and rivers, and demand is growing. 70% of this resource can be used for expanding agriculture. Water is also lost due to leakages, which is approximately 50% in the U.S.
Droughts and high temperatures lead to water shortages. Water supplies are reduced when there is prolonged drought or rising temperatures. The United Nations (UN), states that an increasing population puts further pressure on water reserves. Water Shortages in Developing Countries Around two billion people live in countries with water shortages. This trend could be made worse by climate change. Large lakes are drying out, which impacts not only people, but also wildlife and vegetation.
According to DW, Economic Shortages: “Central Asia, the Arab World, parts of China and India, as well the western United States” are all affected by water scarcity according to Deutsche Welle. This can have serious social and economic implications, as it can impact livelihoods that depend on water and cause conflicts and displacement.
Water Shortages Caused by Mismanagement This kind of problem can be addressed and avoided.
Natural Resources Drain
An increasing global population could seem like a threat to the environment. But, there is also the greater threat of consumption. This is directly connected to the unique supply-demand system. The Australian Academy says that consumption levels can vary depending upon income level, age, gender and other factors. Consumer Demands and Natural Resources. As the population increases, consumers place greater demands on the natural resources of the earth. Add to this the fact that every world government is doing its own kind of commerce, with many people without environmental consciences, you have the recipe for disaster and environmental chaos. WWF regards natural resource consumption as a significant threat. 1.5 years is required to produce renewable goods. Humans require them every year. Greenpeace says that 63% of the world’s marine life has been overfished and there are very few or nonrenewable methods.
WWF considers deforestation a major environmental problem. Global Risks Report 2018 shows that 29.7 million hectares were cleared of forest in 2016. Wildfire in Brazil’s Amazon Rainforest Reuters reported that deforestation caused by the August 2019 deforestation led to a 5% increase of deforestation. Total year-to date deforestation in this region rose by 83% in October 2019.
Forests around the World
The 30% remaining forest areas in the world are under threat from deforestation. National Geographic reports that forests have been cleared mainly for agricultural purposes and logged to make timber. Deforestation can have far-reaching effects. It leads to the loss not only of biomass, plant species, but also habitats. The loss of trees that absorb carbon dioxide is also thought to cause climate change. A region with less biodiversity is more likely to be affected by other environmental elements. Natural Ecological Balance is Disrupted. Deforestation can disrupt the natural ecological balance in the region where trees were harvested. The loss of forests can impact food production.
Soil degradation is a threat to the environment according to WWF. The main causes of soil degrading are soil compaction, soil erosion, and the application or agricultural chemicals. When the forest cover and other vegetation are removed, and the topsoil disappears, soil erosion can occur. Compaction of soil occurs when the land has been over-grazed. The soil is destroyed by heavy tillage that industrial agriculture produces, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization.