Some key terms Environment? Environment refers to everything around us that we can seeand experience. Ecosystem? Interaction of the living and non-living components of theenvironment. It includes all the parts of a livingenvironment, including the plants and animals, AND the non-living components, such as water, air and the suns energy.
Environmental crisis? An acute situation in the environment that may cause theearth to be destroyed by human activities. Ecological catastrophe? The destruction of ecosystem by human activities.
Pollutants? Harmful substances added to environment Pollution? Release of harmful substances to the environment whichcauses the environment to have undesirable changes
Effects of environmental crisis on humans Human is part of the earth’s ecosystem, thus the destructionof ecosystems will surely affect our well-being. Damage to health Damage to buildings and structures. High Economic cost
Damage to health Pollutants in the air can causeirritation of the eyes, nose,throat and skin. People may also experiencedifficulty in breathing. People may also suffer lungdiseases due to the polluted air.
Rubbish and waste that arenot properly disposed of cancause the breeding of germsand pests such as flies, ratsand cockroaches. Infectious diseases such asdiarrhea and malariacan result in death.
Damage to buildings and structures Environmental pollution causesdamage to buildings and structures. Chemicals in the air can causethe paint on cars and buildings to peel. The polluted air can alsocorrode and discolor buildings,statues and monuments.
High economic cost The impact of environmental pollution on health andbuildings and structures has resulted in extra cost for thepeople and the government. Economic cost is loss of income or increase of expenditure asresult of pollution problems.
Causes of environmental crisis Population increase Technology Human consumption patterns
Population growth More forests are cleared for agriculture and settlement andinfrastructure. Forests are the tools used to absorb CO2, so deforestation isa contributor to global warming.
Technological changes Without technology, humans cannot make full use of naturalresources. But, with it, there is an increase in exploitation ofresources to produce goods. More raw materials, electricityare needed to mass produce goods and to run factories. Also, waste from those factories is the main pollutant to soil,ground water, and rivers because waste is disposedimproperly on the ground and into the rivers
Human consumption patterns As people become richer, there is also a greater demand forgoods. People need cars, expensive materials. In this way,more natural resources have to be exploited.