Within the last three decades, environmentalists have tirelessly campaigned to protect the world’s natural environment and resources. Their public awareness campaigns have had a far reach, as more people around the world now appreciate how delicate and fragile the environment is.
Even so, any positive steps gained in the last 30 years are often counterbalanced with negative news that seems to impede the progress of activists and environmentalists. While plenty of bad news abounds regarding this movement, people dedicated to protecting the earth can still take heart in these positive stories.
Solar Energy on the Rise
It has long been suggested that the future of energy lies in the development of solar power. A portion of this future may soon be realized with the recent invention of printable solar panels. Australian scientists have created printable panels that can be implemented in iPads, cell phones, and other mobile devices to serve as low-power applications to charge the devices. These panels could lessen much of the population’s dependency on traditional coal-based energy. It seems that the future for the environment looks bright if we can harness energy from the sun for innovative approaches such as this.
In the recent past, the ozone had many people worried about the condition it was in after the hole within it continued to get larger. Ozone depletion reached its pinnacle in the 1980s when researchers confirmed that aerosols, CFCs, Freon, and other elements contributed to this atmospheric layer’s destruction. Once the link was confirmed, a massive public awareness campaign began to lessen the public’s use of these products. Laws were passed, and eventually these products were used with less frequency and greater care.
Since the 1980s, scientists have watched carefully to see if the ozone layer would recover. They recently announced that in the last 13 years the ozone has recovered by a rate of 4 percent. While this number may seem small, it is still proof that the environment can heal itself if people avoid using products that contribute to its destruction.
Blue Whale Recovery
One of the largest species on the planet, the blue whale was once hunted to near extinction. In fact, by the 1930s, scientists estimated that the once plentiful blue whale population was reduced to around 750 left in existence. Since that time, however, the blue whale population has tripled in number, with 2200 whales now being counted in the waters from Mexico to Alaska by environmentalists. Scientists count this recovery as a great conservation triumph.
These stories show that if citizens, business people, and the scientific and environmentalist communities work together that the earth and its natural resources can be protected and healed. As lawmakers continue to pass legislation and assist in this process, people should still be aware that plenty of work remains to be done in this effort. In fact, some of the top names in technology have also contributed their time, talent, and money to help protect the earth.
Gates’ Pledge to Fight Ebola
Microsoft founder Bill Gates and his wife Melissa have pledged $50 million to fight the ensuing Ebola emergency around the world. As Ebola spreads at alarming rates, scientists have tried to find new ways to curb the possible danger this infection poses to the entire world. Their effort requires a significant amount of financing, however, which has prompted the Gates to pledge their financial support to eradicate this deadly disease.
Branson’s Failed Pledge
While the Gates have carried through with their pledge to fight Ebola, other industry leaders have yet to make good on their own promises. Sir Richard Branson, founder of Virgin Group, is one of the high profile businessmen discussing the interaction between business and climate during the New York City Climate Week. However, Branson promised to donate $3 billion of his own money to develop low-carbon fuel sources. He has yet to follow through with his promise, a fact that is now being highly scrutinized in the media.
The battle to save the environment ebbs and flows with stories of success and setbacks. For every defeat, however, stories of success inevitably follow. As scientists fight new problems found with issues such as fertilizers being found in fresh water supplies, the Australian barrier reef being exposed to depletion and pollution, and ongoing droughts in western states putting water aquifers at risk, environmentalists remind people everywhere to remain committed to the fight and to keep doing everything they can to save the earth and its natural resources.
Enjoy this article? Receive email alerts when new articles are available. Just click on the “Subscribe” button above.