In the 21st-century, the modern world as we know it seems justifiably to be more and more preoccupied with trash and polluting the Earth. According to the American Heritage Science Dictionary, pollution is defined as the “contamination of air, water or soil by substances that are harmful to living organisms”. As the organization rightly notes, pollution can be caused by natural events such as volcanic eruptions just as much as it can erupt due to human activities, oil spillage and wrongful industrial waste being the most common examples. The statistics concerning our lamentable relationship with waste is enough to raise eyebrows and immediately call citizens to action. Pollution affects all of us, whether we like it or not. For instance, pollution is one of the world’s most prevalent killers, affecting more than 100 million people around the world. Although this sadly remains a mostly ignored fact, water pollution is one of the greatest sources of worry for environmentalists such as world-renowned David Suzuki, who has been an ardent advocate of change for years. Due to the fact that more than 1 billion have restricted access to safe drinking water, 5 000 people die every day as a result of being forced to consume dirty water. Although calls to action are repeatedly made by politicians, world leaders, activities and even celebrities, human beings seem unable to significantly alter their modern habits and their impact on world pollution. As such, every single year people dump about 14 billion pounds of garbage, most of its material being plastic, into the ocean. This risky, irresponsible behaviour in turn contaminates wildlife, killing seabirds and mammals. As such, people concerned with the welfare of the planet often perceive vicious circles being drawn on a daily basis, wherein the more human beings pollute, the more they affect the world, which in turn makes life all the harder the live for every living, breathing life source on the Earth.
The question that urgently needs to be asked becomes: how are we as human beings, gifted with intelligence, modern and up-to-date technology and resources, to deal with this increasingly worrying crisis? Should we as citizens of the world be doing more rather than holding conferences? In short, should we be “walking the walk” instead of consistently “talking the talk”?
That said, not all is doom and gloom in the news concerning environmental welfare and wellbeing. Some activities, such as Mark Ruffalo, Leonardo DiCaprio, Neil Young and Robert Redford, to name but a few, have been vocal in their condemnation of common practices such as fracking and industrial dump wastes. It is possible, many journalists posit, that human beings need role models such as celebrities to inspire them to think before adding their own pile to the garbage dump. Although 2014 was declared to be the hottest year of the record according to the United Nations (UN), there is still a lot of work we can do. It’s not too late. We just have to begin being responsible now.
- “Pollution Facts.” http://www.conserve-energy-future.com/various-pollution-facts.php. Web.
- 8 Celebrities Calling for Climate Change.” EcoWatch. http://ecowatch.com/2015/02/03/celebrities-call-for-climate-action/ Web.