HOW TO HELP OUR PLANET > What can you do to FIGHT GLOBAL WARMING ?
A Few Simple Easy Steps for Anybody
Watch the documentary An Inconvenient Truth (2006) by Al Gore
Source : http://www.thesmartmama.com/ii-69/
Simple Steps to help fight climate change
Consume less. Okay, so that’s my simplest step. It might seem glaringly obvious. It might seem impossible, especially if you have kids that are getting ready for school right now. But consuming less is easier than you think. Why is consuming less important? Because the stuff you buy consumes energy in its production – from getting the raw materials that make up the item, to manufacturing it to shipping it. So, cutting back on the stuff you buy will reduce energy consumption. So, instead of buying disposable water bottles, try a stainless steel water bottle. Instead of buying bottled seltzer or bubbly water, make your own at home using, for example, Soda Club USA’s soda maker. (Okay, shameless plug since I’m currently giving one away.) Instead of using paper or plastic bags, choose an eco-friendly recycled tote. There are lots of options to consume less. To consume less packaging, buy in bulk in your own containers. If you pack your own lunch for work, use re-usable containers. There are lots of opportunities.
Inflate your tires. Under inflated tires increase fuel consumption. So, if your tires are at the right pressure, they will reduce fuel economy, increase tire wear and result in higher greenhouse gas emissions. Think about it – driving your car with only one under inflated tire by 8 psi will increase your fuel consumption by 3-4%. Pretty simple step to reduce greenhouse gases and save yourself some money! Other simple tune ups can also increase fuel economy, so take care of your car.
Recycle! Recycling 20 glass bottles will save 2 pounds of carbon. And recycling half of your household generated waste will result in a savings of 2,400 pounds of carbon dioxide per year.
Stop energy vampires. Stand-by on TVs, stereos, video recorders, DVD players, etc., still eat electricity. Use a power strip with a power cut or unplug your equipment. The good news? This may save the average U.S. household as much as $100 per year. And don’t forget to unplug chargers and transforrmers – this consume electricity too even when not charging a device. Try the Kill-A-Watt if you want to see what energy wasters you have.
Insulate your pipes. This can reduce the amount of energy used to heat up your water – and saves water too (if you’re not wasting water waiting for it to warm up).
Wash cold. Wash your clothes on cold. You’ll cut power consumption by 80% using cold water over hot.
Be smart about your AC and heating. We’ve decided to skip the AC completely this summer, but that may not be for everybody. If you can, go solar. Also check with your electrical company and see if you can switch to a green power program. This will fund research and investment in alternate energy sources.
Weatherize and insulate your home. Cut heating and cooling costs and energy consumed by weatherizing your home. For example, many homes are not insulated, and insulating will help cut your heating bills by as much as 50%. Weatherstrip doors and windows. Cover your outdoor air conditioner.
Buy energy-efficient. If you are buying new appliances, always buy energy efficient products. Look for the Energy Star label indicating that the product meets energy efficiency guidelines established by the EPA and US Department of Energy. And, switch your bulbs to CFL to go energy efficient in your lighting.
Buy local and organic. Buying locally grown food can save energy used to transport food.
Make less children. Each one of us puts pressure on the natural world, consumes the Earth’s finite resources and contributes to climate change. Many people today now recognise that and seek to live in a more sustainable and environmentally friendly manner with less people around, including environmental considerations in their decisions about the size of family they should have. A growing number of people are now joining them.
Source : http://www.oddee.com/item_96827.aspx
10 Things Global Warming Could Change Forever
by Grace Murano
1- Great Barrier Reef may be gone in 20 years
The Great Barrier Reef will be so degraded by warming waters that it will be unrecognizable within 20 years. Charlie Veron, former chief scientist of the Australian Institute of Marine Science, told The Times: “There is no way out, no loopholes. The Great Barrier Reef will be over within 20 years or so.” Once carbon dioxide had hit the levels predicted for between 2030 and 2060, all coral reefs were doomed to extinction, he said. “They would be the world's first global ecosystem to collapse. I have the backing of every coral reef scientist, every research organization. I've spoken to them all. This is critical. This is reality.”
2- Amazon Rain Forest may turn into a desert
Teeming with millions of species and one-fifth of the world's fresh water, the Amazon is the world's largest tropical rainforest. However, global warming and deforestation are reversing the forest's role as a carbon sink, converting 30-60% of the rainforest into dry savannah. Projections show the forest could disappear completely by 2050.
3- Sahara Desert may become green
Scientists are seeing signals that the Sahara desert and surrounding regions are greening due to increasing rainfall. If sustained, these rains could revitalize drought-ravaged regions, reclaiming them for farming communities. This desert-shrinking trend is supported by climate models, which predict a return to conditions that turned the Sahara into a lush savanna some 12,000 years ago.
4- Hurricanes may become more devastating than Katrina
It has not been determined whether Katrina was linked to global warming. But there are indications that global warming will produce more Category 5 hurricanes --and Katrina was only Category 4 when it hit Louisiana. Hurricanes derive their power in part from warm water, and so forecasting models show future hurricanes becoming more severe as sea surface temperatures rise. Global warming also makes hurricanes more destructive by raising the sea level, which leads to more serious coastal flooding. (According to the EPA, a two-foot rise would swallow a chunk of the U.S. bigger than Massachusetts.)
5- London may disappear underwater by 2100
It isn't only reefs and low-lying islands that are under threat from global warming. In fact, a major threat is for those large urban areas which are at risk of eventually being submerged underwater. This is caused by a change in sea levels that occurs when global warming takes place, resulting in coastal cities being destroyed by flooding. Dozens of the world's cities, including London and New York, could be flooded by the end of the century, according to research which suggests that global warming will increase sea levels more rapidly than was previously thought. London is one of the major world capitals at high risk of this type of flooding, as depicted in this shot from the 2007 movie Flood. Scientists say that the city could be under water as early as within the next one hundred years.
6- Animals may shrink
Warming climate may favor small species over large ones. The research, based on analysis of body mass of fish, plankton, and bacteria in European ecosystems, comes just weeks after scientists reported that sheep on a Scottish island are shrinking due to warmer conditions.
The new study reveals that individual species lost an average of 50 percent of their body mass over the past 30 years. The reduced body size is the third universal ecological response to global warming. An earlier sheep study suggested that shorter and milder winters mean lambs do not need to put on as much as weight as they once did in order to survive their first year of life, a factor that could also impact fish populations. Nonetheless the researchers say the shift could alter food chains, with apex predators being particularly affected by shrinking prey.
7- 2,000 Indonesian islands may disappear
At least 2,000 small islands across archipelagic Indonesia may disappear by 2030 as a consequence of excessive mining and other environment-damaging activities. Indonesia has already lost 24 of its more than 17,500 islands.
8- Global warming may increase terrorism
Global warming could destabilize "struggling and poor" countries around the world, prompting mass migrations and creating breeding grounds for terrorists. People are likely to flee destabilized countries, and some may turn to terrorism. The conditions exacerbated by the effects of climate change could increase the pool of potential recruits into terrorist activity. According to the chairman of the National Intelligence Council in the US, economy refugees will perceive additional reasons to flee their homes because of harsher climates. That will put pressure on countries receiving refugees, many of which will have neither the resources nor interest to host these climate migrants.
This situation is already happening in Europa since 2015.
9- The Alps may melt completely
Glaciers are retreating in warm, dry winters and hotter summers caused by global warming, and although snowfall in the 2008-2009 ski seasons was substantial, overall recent years have seen less snow at low altitudes, and receding glaciers and melting permafrost higher up - with a significant impact on winter tourism activities. It is predicted that the glaciers will be gone between 2030 and 2050. Italy and Switzerland have decided to redraw their border after global warming dissolved Alpine glaciers that marked out the frontier between the two countries.
The Kilimandjaro (Tanzania) is already melting.
10- The Maldives may be submerged
The lowest and flattest country in the world is suffering coastal erosion, and could find itself submerged if sea levels carry on rising, with the islands growing smaller and smaller. This extreme prediction is a devastating prospect for residents and bad news for the tourists who descend on its soft white beaches and warm waters each year. Scientists give it only about one hundred years before it completely disappears into the ocean surrounding it.
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