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Archive for the ‘Air issues’ Category

If the current American government, the Obama Administration, is serious about increasing the number of people with ‘green-collar’ jobs, they ought to start by initiating a massive reforestation/afforestation plan which is organized on a local/county basis.  More Americans also ought to be trained in forestry and related environmental fields instead of ones which are mostly useless or even harmful to society such as banking/usury, paper-pushing, unnecessary legal jobs, etc.

A nationwide reforestation/afforestation plan would be rather simple to do, and it would also employ very many Americans who are currently unemployed and/or underemployed.  Trees ought to be replanted everywhere possible in an organized and methodical way.

Trees help to control the loss of vital topsoil to erosion, and they also preserve water/moisture in soils.  Additionally, trees absorb excess carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and use it to produce oxygen (which is of course a necessity for human existence).

Deforestation causes droughts — believe it or not, the trees and other natural vegetation of a region often ‘interacts’ with the localized atmosphere to produce rain, humidity, and other beneficial weather patterns. Thus, when you cut down most of the trees in an area and clear the land for houses, parking lots, shopping centers, skyscrapers, factories, etc, the land will eventually become a desert or semi-desert if trees are not eventually re-established in to the habitat.

Did you know that much of Italy, Spain, and North Africa used to be heavily forested back a few thousand years ago in ancient Greek/Roman times and of course long before that? Now widespread desertification has occurred in many areas of those countries since the ancient inhabitants of those areas often cleared the land of trees (to make room for farmland, pastureland, and towns/cities) and thus a lot of the rain eventually left those areas as a result of the loss of vegetation.  Over time, incessant winds (which were once mostly blocked by trees or other vegetation) have loosened or blown away the topsoil which also became increasingly dried out from the sunlight beating down on it constantly due to the lack of a forest canopy to protect it from getting sun-baked on a daily basis during the hotter months.  Whenever it rained heavily a lot of topsoil was washed away due to the lack of trees and associated vegetation, the roots of which once served to hold that precious topsoil in place.  Thus, over a period of centuries after an area had been deforested, entirely new deserts or semi-deserts were formed where once lush forests thrived.

The USA and other nations ought to learn from the catastrophic mistakes of past civilizations instead of repeating them.  I propose that a nationwide program of reforestation/afforestation is needed in order to make sure that we do not slowly turn large swathes of North America in to a desert-like environment in the coming centuries due to irresponsible and unsustainable levels of deforestation.

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Dealing with the ever more flimsy food-supply chain(s) as well as the problem of energy availability and usage, the overall transportation system of the present era is increasingly obsolete, chaotic, primitive, and inadequate.  The current (and still growing) world population, as well as the compounding levels of complexity and sophistication which it takes to run our modern world, are making the problems related to transportation even more acute.

The flawed and unsustainable makeup of the current transportation network(s) in many countries is evident simply by observing only one busy intersection and/or highway in a single city, which is located in only one county, which is found in one state, in one country, on one continent, etc.  By taking the time to observe one single hectic, polluted, crowded, and frenzied intersection and/or highway, and then multiplying that by hundreds of thousands of not millions of similar intersections/highways located around the world in virtually every other area of dense human habitation, you can get a sense of the exceedingly unsound, unhinged, and frankly broken transportation situation that we currently find ourselves in.

An astonishingly large number of people in countries around the world are now finding themselves permanently stranded at home; an increasing number are nowadays either unable to afford a mode of transportation and its many associated expenses or they are stuck in an undeveloped/developing nation where the needed transportation infrastructure has not yet been built up to accommodate the rapidly increasing demand and use.  As a result of the oil-dependent transportation systems which so many countries currently rely on, many of these people are unable to participate at all in the socio-cultural, economic, and/or political lives of their own country or even their native region.  This of course leaves many destined to a life of poverty, alienation, and dispossession because they are unable to get where they need to go in order to try and secure a decent existence for themselves and their families.  This dire situation is already causing a great deal of economic, political, and general social unrest in many areas, and it is likely to get much worse before it gets any better.

It is clear that the many issues and problems related to transportation loom menacingly large in almost every area, region, state, and country, and unless many drastic, sweeping, and all-encompassing steps are taken fairly soon the chaotic gridlock will regrettably continue to deepen and spread.

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Ever since the advent of the Industrial Revolution and the resulting population explosion, the Earth’s air has slowly become more dirty, toxic, noxious, and injurious to the health of many living things on Earth.

Uncountable numbers of automobiles and a huge number of factories as well as energy plants worldwide have been belching and spewing toxic gases/fumes and related pollutants in to our atmosphere for decade after decade since the advent of the Industrial Revolution, and worst of all this is actually accelerating rather than abating due to the rapid economic development of numerous countries in Asia and elsewhere.

The incidence of various diseases and disorders related to bad air-quality are now becoming widespread in many nations, especially in and around various urban areas where the pollution, smoke, smog, and other airborne toxins congregate and congeal.

Even worse, this incessant spewing of pollution in to the atmosphere may be causing the Earth’s climate to undergo major shifts which could further endanger life on our planet.  Whether or not one believes that ‘climate change’ and/or ‘global warming’ is actually occurring, the constant as well as long-term discharge of enormous amounts of pollutants in to the air is obviously injurious to the Earth’s environment and everything that lives on it.

Meanwhile, widespread deforestation continues full-steam-head and shows no signs whatsoever of tapering off any time soon – thus not only are we continuing to recklessly fill our air with huge amounts of pollution but we are simultaneously removing the ‘lungs’ of our Earth (trees/forests) which help to naturally filter the air.

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I. The Current Human and Environmental Crisis: A Call to Action and Overview of Major Problems

II. Population and Demographic Issues
a. Overpopulation and the resultant overstraining of vital resources

III. Water: The Basis of All Life on Earth
a. Increasing freshwater depletion/pollution
b. Massive wasting of valuable freshwater
c. Ocean pollution and overfishing

IV. Soil: The Foundation of Human Civilizations
a. Topsoil loss: widespread erosion and soil mismanagement
b. Soil contamination/pollution
c. Over-farming/soil exhaustion
d. Over-reliance on fertilizers/pesticides/chemicals/etc

V. Food: Everyone Has To Eat
a. Very unstable food supplies
b. Industrial agriculture/factory-farming is cruel to the inhabitants of Earth (both humans and animals) and is entirely unsustainable
c. The widespread loss of knowledge regarding food production due to overdependence on automation and machinery for food production

VI. Air: We All Breathe
a. Air pollution
b. Weather/ozone problems: climate change/global warming, etc
c. Deforestation: the collapsing lungs of our Earth

VII. Living Patterns: They’re Going to Have to Change…Drastically
a. Unsustainable overconsumption/waste
b. Social (dis)organization is reaching near-anarchic levels in some countries
c. Widespread disconnection/alienation from nature is fueling nihilism and other pathological behaviors

VIII. Energy: It’s What Makes the Modern World Work
a. Soiling our own nest: too much dirty energy (oil, coal, natural gas, etc)
b. Increasing depletion of oil/nat-gas/coal/etc: peak oil?
c. Widespread energy inefficiency/waste

IX. Transportation: Moving People and Stuff Around
a. Increasingly obsolete transportation networks for the current (and still growing) world population
b. Fragile, polluting, and unsustainable supply chains for necessary resources and consumer goods

X. How Long Does Humanity Have to Start On a More Sustainable Path?
a. Is so-called ‘globalization’ sustainable or even desirable?
b. The danger of over-contentment, procrastination, neglecting to act, and general human laziness
c. The specter of regional, national, or even global collapse/disintegration

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The Human Sustainability Plan (THSP)

OUR EARTH

PERSISTENT PROBLEMS – SOME SOLUTIONS – INACTION IS IMPOSSIBLE

It is increasingly difficult to deny that humanity is spiraling out of control on multiple levels.  As such, this website seeks to offer commentary on and possible solutions to the current socio-environmental crisis.

I particularly seek to provide a gathering place for links to other websites and/or pertinent research resources which are focused on the modern ‘green/sustainability movement,’ human/environmental sustainability, environmental conservation/protection, all aspects of environmental science, ecology, enviro-economics, ecopolitical issues, natural resources, simple living, agrarianism, localism, and a myriad of other related topics.

If you know of more good websites, books, or any other sources of information pertaining to environmental topics please put them in a comment here or in another post so that I can take a look and then possibly add them to the links section of this website if they prove informative and helpful.

Also, please don’t be shy in terms of criticizing the ideas contained on this website, as well as correcting the grammar, word usage, and/or stylistics of my writing if you catch mistakes.  Any and all criticism is very helpful and is fully welcome here.

I’m adding the entire categorical structure of this website to this particular post (see directly below) so that readers can get a sense of what topics this blog will focus on.

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