The importance of becoming “greener”

by Halle Wynn/Staff Writer

Photo: Charles Lawrence, 9, demonstrates the importance of recycling. 

Saving the planet is as easy as turning off your lights, right before you leave for a long night. Turning off your lights can not only decrease electric bills, but save energy that individuals can utilize later on. People have to understand that the planet is polluted by trash and pollution  acts at a constant rate. Mr. John Rihm, science department, provided his definition of pollution as, “any substance that is introduced into the environment that is harmful.” In addition, Ms. Rebecca Fields, science department, added, “Pollution is an overabundance of something that is natural in the system or something that is unnatural in a natural system.”

Have you ever come in contact with a green or blue bin that features a “chasing arrows” symbol that is located on the center of the bin? These are recycling bins. Recycling bins help encourage people throughout the world, to recycle their waste. In schools, these bins are positioned in every classroom and every office. When a student is handed back a paper and does not feel the need to keep it, the student should go over to the recycling box. Putting reusable papers in the trash kills more trees and injures the land that we call home. Additionally, many towns, cities, and even organizations, promote this healthy behavior by advertising slogans and signs. In example, “Reduce, reuse, and recycle” is an old slogan that Rihm said is still valid.

Not only is technology one of the major priorities to humans, but technology destroys our planet from the 1970’s when the first mobile phone was produced, to this generation’s Apple’s iPhone. To that extent, when a cell phone becomes a “dinosaur” or outdated, it is trashed, which then adds to the endless pile of pollution. Ms. Candy Smith, science department, said, “Technology has added to that trash pile with outdated devices.” To prevent more pollution; Fields suggested, “educating individuals so that they are not persuaded by the misinformation that technology gives.” If America provides education about what is happening to our planet, the youth would think differently and criticize the actions that they might or might not, choose to act on. As a matter of fact, Smith also added, “The youth better realize that the trash they produce now, will be here the rest of their lives.”

Although most of America has clean water, countries such as Uganda, Ethiopia, Nigeria, Cambodia, Ghana, Nepal, Pakistan, and Mexico, do not, according to a recent US News article. Water is necessary for a human being to survive. When citizens are provided with dirty water, it leads to not only diseases, but destruction as well. According to the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, about 801,000 children younger than 5 years of age perish from diarrhea each year, mostly in developing countries. This amounts to 11% of the 7.6 million deaths of children under the age of five and means that about 2,200 children are dying every day as a result of diarrheal diseases.  If people in developed countries  were to donate just a few cents to those who are not as privileged, the world would slowly become a better place. According to Wateraid, 844 million people do not have clean drinking water and that is a big problem that could turn into an even greater conflict that could eventually wipe out third world countries.

       Furthermore, rising sea levels are currently occurring in tropical areas of our world. This increase in water is a result that is caused by global warming. In fact, Oxford Living Dictionaries defines the phrase of global warming as “a gradual increase in the overall temperature of the earth’s atmosphere…” Therefore, global warming is a dangerous aspect that is surprisingly not only damaging our world, but soon destructing the earth as a whole.

Smith believes, “Very few recycle.” This worldwide issue has increased throughout the years, starting with the third-world countries such as Haiti. Looking at all the worldwide issues that individuals face in the world today, poverty and pollution are at the top of the list.

“We have to figure out a way to recycle more,” added Smith. In society today, finding more ways to save the planet seems like a difficult task to accomplish. Although this world struggles, with all the damage stationed around, a low majority of people commit their time to making the planet a better and safe place for us to live in.

Some ways that those citizens commit their time to help protecting Mother Nature include: reusing their containers, recycling their ink cartridges, buying rechargeable batteries, buying cloth bags instead of paper or plastic, donating to charity, utilizing cloth towels rather than paper towels, and purchasing recyclable items that citizens can reuse in the further future. Overall, people should contribute their time to earthly actions that could help the world and help Mother Nature become more and more healthier, each passing day. As a matter of fact, Stephen Hawking once said, “We are in danger of destroying ourselves by our greed and stupidity. We cannot remain looking inwards at ourselves on a small and increasingly polluted and overcrowded planet.”