The main current environmental issues and what we can do to help

While Climate change is the biggest environmental issue that we’ve been facing, there are also many others that humanity will face over the next decade — from water shortages and loss of biodiversity to waste management — here’s what you can do to help our planet. 

Protecting Biodiversity 

Due to the destruction of their habitats, poaching and the introduction of invasive species, 8% of know animal species have already been lost and 22% are at risk of extinction. To help protect biodiversity here are some things you can do.  

– Buy fewer products and make sure that the products you buy minimize the impact on biodiversity 

– Recycling 

– Teaching children about biodiversity, ecosystems and the threats they face and opportunities to restore them 

– Supporting political action committed to protecting and restoring biodiversity 

Climate change mitigation and adaptation 

 Global warming due to CO2 emissions  is accelerating climate change and threatening the survival of millions of people, plants and animals by causing meteorological events like droughts, fires and floods, which are becoming increasingly frequent and more extreme. This means we need to take measures to mitigate it’s effects and adapt to it’s consequences which, even if we keep global warming under 2 ºC as required by the Paris Agreements will last for centuries. Here are some things you can to help climate change mitigation and adaptions. 

– Advocate for changes to our energy system. Tell companies that if they want you to buy their products, they need to be energy efficient, use renewable energy, and minimise waste. 

– Use renewable energy. The most long-term cost-saving approach is to install solar panels in your home 

– Sign up for an electricity supplier that uses wind energy and other renewables 

– Change your transportation. Reduce driving by walking and biking instead, and using shared transportation, public or private.  

Protecting the oceans  

The oceans have become giant waste dumps for plastics. There are other serious environmental problems related to the oceans such as damage to ecosystems due to global warming, dumping of pollutants, wastewater and fuel spills. Here are some things you can do to help protect the oceans.

– Conserve water. Use less water to excess runoff and waste water won’t flow into the ocean. 

– Reduce pollutants. Choose nontoxic chemicals and dispose of herbicides, pesticides and cleaning products properly. 

– Reduce waste. Cut down on what you throw away. 

– Shop wisely. Choose sustainable seafood. Buy less plastic and bring a reusable bag.

While I’ve covered some of the main environmental issues there are also many others to be aware of, such as pollutions problems and their effect on health, the energy transition and renewables, a sustainable food model and sustainable urban development and mobility. Protecting the planet is crucial at this stage, for nature, animals and ourselves, so please do your own research and start doing small things everyday to help our planet.

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