Sunday, April 22, 2012

Earth Day and the war against the earth

Hat tip to the German artist for this poster

The post I did about the Gulf Coast got me to thinking about our little rock we live on. Actually it was Jim over at An Average American Patriot who steered my brain cell down that path with his article on the new cold war on oil in the arctic. It reminded me of the amount of plastics we're dumping in the oceans that's not going away any time soon. Our rivers aren't in a very pretty situation either. There's a group of volunteers that comb the Mississippi removing literally tons of trash from grocery bags to cars and refrigerators. Now there may have been a time many many years ago when such dumping would go unnoticed but with the population explosion that thoughtless toss of a candy wrapper or drink cup out the car window gets multiplied by the millions.

I was going to post about just the above issue but the way we treat our earth is far more serious and mean than that. Imagine if we treated a friend like we do the earth? They wouldn't be friends much longer that's for sure. So aside from the tons of plastics that we're dumping every day there are other issues that make up the whole of our environmental existence. I give you:

Climate change — Global warming • Global dimming • Fossil fuels • Sea level rise • Greenhouse gas • Ocean acidification • Shutdown of thermohaline circulation • Environmental impact of the coal industry
Conservation — Species extinction • Pollinator decline • Coral bleaching • Holocene extinction • Invasive species • Poaching • Endangered species
Energy — Energy conservation • Renewable energy • Efficient energy use • Renewable energy commercialization • Environmental impact of the coal industry
Environmental degradation — Eutrophication • Habitat destruction • Invasive species
Environmental health — Air quality • Asthma • Environmental impact of the coal industry • Electromagnetic fields • Electromagnetic radiation and health • Indoor air quality • Lead poisoning • Sick Building Syndrome
Genetic engineering — Genetic pollution • Genetically modified food controversies
Intensive farming — Overgrazing • Irrigation • Monoculture • Environmental effects of meat production • Slash and burn • Pesticide drift • Plasticulture
Land degradation — Land pollution • Desertification
Soil — Soil conservation • Soil erosion • Soil contamination • Soil salination
Land use — Urban sprawl • Habitat fragmentation • Habitat destruction
Nanotechnology — Nanotoxicology • Nanopollution
Nuclear issues — Nuclear fallout • Nuclear meltdown • Nuclear power • Nuclear weapons • Nuclear and radiation accidents • Nuclear safety • High-level radioactive waste management.
Overpopulation — Burial • Water crisis • Overpopulation in companion animals • Tragedy of the commons
Ozone depletion — CFC
Pollution — Environmental impact of the coal industry • Nonpoint source pollution • Point source pollution • Light pollution • Noise pollution • Visual pollution
Water pollution — Environmental impact of the coal industry • Acid rain • Eutrophication • Marine pollution • Ocean dumping • Oil spills • Thermal pollution • Urban runoff • Water crisis • Marine debris • Microplastics • Ocean acidification • Ship pollution • Wastewater • Fish kill • Algal bloom • Mercury in fish
Air pollution — Environmental impact of the coal industry • Smog • Tropospheric ozone • Indoor air quality • Volatile organic compound • Particulate matter
Reservoirs — Environmental impacts of reservoirs
Resource depletion — Exploitation of natural resources • Overdrafting
Consumerism — Consumer capitalism • Planned obsolescence • Over-consumption
Fishing — Blast fishing • Bottom trawling • Cyanide fishing • Ghost nets • Illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing • Overfishing • Shark finning • Whaling
Logging — Clearcutting • Deforestation • Illegal logging
Mining — Acid mine drainage • Hydraulic fracturing • Mountaintop removal mining • Slurry impoundments
Toxins — Chlorofluorocarbons • DDT • Endocrine disruptors • Dioxin • Toxic heavy metals • Environmental impact of the coal industry • Herbicides • Pesticides • Toxic waste • PCB • Bioaccumulation • Biomagnification
Waste — Electronic waste • Litter • Waste disposal incidents • Marine debris • Medical waste • Landfill • Leachate • Environmental impact of the coal industry • Incineration • Great Pacific garbage patch

Now we could ignore many of these things if we wanted to after all much of what goes on happens out of our eye shot but the effects they have will be felt on all of us whether we like it or not. It's a sad state of affairs when you stop to realize than many of these problems could easily be solved with better oversight and recycling methods. People may think it's cheap to just dump it in an out of the way place where nobody will notice but eventually it will come back to bite us and bite us big time. So you can pay a little bit now or a whole lot later. The choice is yours. Me? I'm a cheap old fart. I learned the three R's years ago. Reduce reuse and recycle.


BBC said...

The only way to get a handle on things is wise governments thinking and making the right laws, and enforcing them, and I'm pretty damn sure that isn't going to happen any more than these monkeys wising up a bringing the populations back down.

Not enough is going to be done until it's too late so kiss your grand-kids good-bye.

Randal Graves said...

Dude, we're fucked, you know it, I know it, BBC knows it, everyone knows it.

The Blog Fodder said...

That is quite a list. Unfortunately various special interest groups have fixated to the extreme on one or two to the detriment of a balanced approach to environmental protection. Reducing our "footprint" on all of these would be more productive than trying to eliminate it on a few. Extremists on both sides will result in the inevitable elimination of all our footprints.

BBC said...

It's going to be interesting to see how all these modern independent women will be doing in the future.