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Environmental Problems, Mitigation Measures and Effectiveness - Essay Example

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Environmental Problems, Mitigation Measures and Effectiveness Environmental changes result in global climate changes, which increases or decreases environmental sustainability of anthropogenic activities. Environmental challenges facing the planet are caused by natural forces like orbital variation, increase in solar output, volcanic activity, and plate tectonics among others…
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Environmental Problems, Mitigation Measures and Effectiveness
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Download file to see previous pages The other anthropogenic activity is destruction of the natural environment by unsustainable use of resources, a factor that has also resulted in world climate changes (Dalby, 2002: 44). Atmospheric pollution is the main cause of global warming; it results from the accumulation of carbon IV oxide and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, trapping heat from the sun in the earth’s atmosphere. Greenhouse gases are by-products of industrial combustion, which means that the extent to which a country contributes to global warming by these gases depends on the level of industrialization; a high level of industrialisation causes increased consumption of fossil fossils. Fossil fuels like natural gas, oil and its products have a high carbon content that is released in huge quantities and at a faster rate than can be sequestered by natural carbon sinks like forests and oceans. In this case, first world nations and rapidly developing third world nations are the main contributing agents to environmental degradation by industrial pollution. On the other hand, environmental degradation can occur due to unsustainable use of natural resources like forests and water bodies; this is a serious problem in developing countries (Adil, 2005: 315). The economies of these countries are primarily agricultural based; the high rate of population growth necessitates high agricultural production for food security. However, deteriorating climatic conditions have reduced the productivity of land in these areas, forcing people to clear more forests for agricultural purposes. Consequently, forests that play a role in precipitation are destroyed, and the areas receive less rainfall; this has a negative effect on agricultural productivity, which forces further clearance of forested areas. This cycle goes on and on until many of productive lands have become barren, especially due to poor farming practices and the dependence on rains for agriculture in these countries. Some of the effects of environmental degradation include loss of biodiversity; decreasing ice coverage on mountain tops and poles that pose a threat to sustenance of the hydrological cycle; and desertification by loss of vegetation cover. Moreover, it causes climatic changes like extreme weather conditions whereby dry areas get drier, hot areas hotter, and wet areas wetter; and a rise in sea level that destroys sceneries and property (Barry and Eckersley, 2005: 255). Based on the economic implications of these changes and their threat to survival of life in the planet, governments and international organisations have taken measures to mitigate the effects of the environmental problems that result from these changes (Carter, 2001: 282). These measures target the two main aspects of environmental degradation including pollution and unsustainable use of resources; there have been some level of success though with some limitations too. This paper discusses the measures taken by governments and international organisations; the extent of success of these interventions; the limitations facing effective implementation of interventions; and the consequences of these measures. Intervention Measures Governments have come up with environmental policies that aim at encouraging adoption of environmentally sustainable approaches by their citizens. For instance, ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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