Threats to our environment today

Happy New November!
Where did the year fly to? Wasn’t it just the other day that we were wishing each other, “ Happy New Year!” and setting new goals for the year. Hope you have had a good one so far and even if the year has not met your expectations, reading this means that you are still alive and that is something to be grateful for.
This month brings an end to the different Wellness focus areas that “Wacha niKwambie” blog has focussed on this past year before we take a break. We deserve a vacation too – don’t you think? But just before we embark on that much needed vacation one last theme: Kwetu. The environment, what are some of the dangers it faces, what are we doing to protect it will be one of our theme areas.
Allow us to begin the discussion by highlighting key threats that Mother Nature faces today.

Deforestation
This involves the indiscriminate chopping of trees. This leads to less trees and reduces the amount of oxygen for us human beings to breathe. Apart from that forest cover increases the amount of rainfall and directly the amount of water available for us to use. If deforestation continues expect drier climates and increased global warming to continue in days to come. What can we do to improve on the forest cover in our planet?

Pollution
The air we breathe is becoming increasingly dangerous for us to breath. A view on many cosmopolitan cities across the world and a blanket of smog seems to cover them from the skies. Consider too the case of rubbish, plastic, litter, some of which contain dangerous compounds like lead, arscenic etc. How are we dealing with old gadgets like our mobile/cell phones once we are done with them? Many of them contain these harmful compounds. Consider too the case of rivers, lakes and other water catchment areas that because of human selfishness are polluted with refuse, sewage among many other things. Closer home consider the case of Nairobi River, a close look at it and one cannot believe that it is actually a river. There has been a lot of hue and cry on protection of riparian land in my country Kenya for example. What can we do to stop pollution of our natural resources?

Climate change
Because of several factors the temperatures that we experience these days are much different from temperatures experienced in past years. Hot months are hotter and cold months are colder. Due to these, several agricultural initiatives cannot thrive at an optimum hence reducing the amount of food available for us to eat. Consider too the quality of life that we as human beings experienced. For us in East Africa, January is but two months away. For the past few consecutive Januaries it has been exceptionally hot, with one documented death of a Kenyan student dying from heat stroke. Because of climate change the polar ice caps are melting at a very fast rate, flooding has increased, certain cities that are located next to the sea are worried about their existence in years to come. Other results of this climate change is an imbalance in wildlife and increase in harmful green house gases. What can we do to stop this dangerous trajectory in climate change?

Loss of biodiversity
The changes in the environment are in turn linked to the population of plant and animal species in the planet. Every single organism has a role to play in Mother Nature’s balance. Several species are getting extinct. Closer home, the last white northern rhino died this year. Rest in animal eternal peace, Sudan and the other several white northern rhinos that have gone before you. Consider too the case of depleting oxygen levels in the sea meaning that several of them can no longer support marine life. What can we do to conserve all plants and animals?

Explosive population growth
In certain parts of the world, the increase in population is not commensurate to the natural resources available. This brings a strain in things like food, water, well being, quality of life and even security. What can you and I do with the resources that we have available?

Kudos to our governments and regulatory bodies that are doing the best to protect the environment for generations to come and addressing the bigger picture. However, there is a lot that you and I can do on the ground to protect our environment. What can we do?

“Wacha niKwambie”
November 2018 – Kwetu
A focus on conservation of the environment and deliberate interior design of homes.

© Kwambie Nyambane,
November 2018

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