Save Our Earth!

October 9, 2008

How is the weather that you feel now?

Let’s try to compare with the situation when you were still young. When you were young, the temperature during the winter season was relatively much colder than the temperature during winter now. Don’t you feel that also?

I had a discussion with one of the leaders from Kyungnam University a couple months ago. He said the current climate situation of is different with the climate situation in the early 70s.“When I was a little boy the temperature during winter or even autumn was very cold. Now, the temperature has become much warmer than it used to” said him. In addition to that, I also remember when I had discussion with my boss (at my part time job). He said that nowadays, not only climate, but also the global environment of Korea has changed. “When I was still young there were lots of empty places for me to play at. Now, lots of places have turned to buildings and factories. .Ohh…I think it will be lost for a next year because of human needed”.

Climate has changed not only in Korea, but also in my country, Indonesia, and – even – in all over the world. Indonesia only has two seasons: wet and dry season. The period for these two seasons was predictable. Before 2000, we would expect wet season would be happened from September until February, meanwhile dry season from March to August.. Now, unfortunately, as the climate has changed since the last decade, the period for those two climatic seasons has been unable to be predicted.

Moreover, the global temperature has become warmer than it used to.. We can see what has happened in the north and south poles. Most of the ice has been melted. We should question what will be happened if this happen to all of the ice there. Most of experts say that the melting ice will increase the sea level. Should the sea level rise, the coastal areas in all over the world will tend to be flooded; and even, mega floods also could be happened like what was happened in Gangwon (July,2006) and Jakarta (February, 2007).

Global warming is “a term regarding the gradual increase of the earth’s temperature” (Wikipedia). Global warming has potential to trigger lots or climate related disaster such us extreme weather events, intense storms, heat waves, droughts and floods. Any of these disasters will bring disruptions to the impacted areas.

Why has the temperature of the earth become warmer? Many factors have potential to make this condition to be occurred. Actually, naturally the global temperature will become warmer due to the heat from the sun (green house effects), but humans have made it become worse. As most of people do not care about their environment, so many people use cars and motorcycles carelessly. Man made environment such as buildings and factories also have potential to create pollution – either; water, soil, and air pollution – and harm the natural environment.

In addition, regarding the green house effects, the concept of this process is the same with the “green house or glass house” thus we name it “green house effect”. Because of the over loaded of CO2 production, the atmosphere will be covered by CO2 elements in which will capture the heat from the Sun. Therefore, the earth’s temperature will become warmer gradually.

What should we do to address this situation? As a human, each of us has a responsibility to save our earth. By being more concerned to our environment, we can save the world! Here are some efforts that we start to do from our self:

  1. Turn off lights when they are not in use. Although the light bulb itself does not emit gases, the power plants that are powering it do.
  2. Whenever possible, use a fan instead of air conditioning.
  3. Keep a car tuned up. When it is running properly, it emits fewer harmful gases.
  4. Walk or ride a bike when it’s possible
  5. Recycle. Un-recycled garbage ends up in a landfill, which produces methane. In addition, recycled goods require less energy to produce than products made from scratch.
  6. Plant trees and other plant life whenever possible. Plants take carbon dioxide out of the air and release oxygen.
  7. Eat less or no beef, as beef production is a large source of greenhouse gases (methane,) as well as a large cause of deforestation.
  8. Don’t burn garbage. This releases carbon dioxide and hydrocarbons into the atmosphere.
  9. Whenever possible eat food cold. Heating things up wastes more energy than almost everything else.
  10. Improvise whenever possible; it is better than buying a tool you only use once.
  11. Don’t buy more than one bottle of water in places where the water from the tap cannot be drunk. Instead, buy one bottle, and then boil water, let it cool (but not in the refrigerator) and use the original plastic bottle for your portable water supply. If your tap water is drinkable out of the tap, use this water instead of bottled water.

In addition, the most effective way to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases is to develop non-fossil fuel energy sources. Hydro-electric power, solar power, hydrogen engines and fuels cells are all ways to cut down emissions.

More importantly, for the leader of the country, they will play important roles. As an example produce a healthy environment policy so that the causes of global warming (over population, deforestation, ozone depletion). Those policies or programs that can reduce the global warming are such as: family planning policies to prevent overpopulation; educate people to be friendlier to environment (effect, solutions of greenhouse); mass publication use media to increase people’s awareness on global warming. This is causing both individuals and governments to act more responsibly towards to the environment.

To conclude this essay, the future condition of our earth, depends to the human’s behavior. Since we realize and start from now to save our earth, all of us could be the heroes of future earth condition.

this article sent to Kyungnam Times, Oct 2008