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Thursday, October 23, 2008

Earth Savers

According to Nicodemus Wilderness Project, the human race has been responsible for releasing carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. The use of fossil fuels for transportation and energy has largely contributed to global warming, which slowly destroys the earth’s biodiversity and natural ecosystems.

The practical solutions to the problem are:

1. Reduce as much as possible the use of fossil fuels. The use of alternative and renewable energy can reduce the effects of global warming like biogas or biodiesel, the compressed natural gas, and electric cars. Although, the present supply of these products is not enough for mass use, however, we must have a starting point.

2. Help protect the native forests from illegal logging by not taking part in these illegal activities or report any knowledge of people who commit these illegal activities. Forests serve as "carbon storehouses" that neutralize greenhouse gases.

3. Help plant native trees in urban and deforested areas.

4. You may volunteer with organizations that honestly work toward protecting the environment like the Green Earth Movement, Green Peace International or the Nicodemus Wilderness Project (Volunteer) etc.

5. If you cannot physically participate, you may show your support by donating a certain amount to “trusted” organizations. For example, the Nicodemus Wilderness Project says that for every $10 donation, they can sponsor one apprentice ecologist and plant 3.1 native trees based on their total program costs and conservation project accomplishments. (On a personal note: Just make you know and trust the organization before making any donations)

The benefits of planting native trees

1. They help stop global warming by reducing greenhouse gases.

2. They reduce soil erosion and water pollution.

3. They provide habitat for native wildlife (including songbirds).

4. They improve human health by producing oxygen and improving air quality.

5. They reduce home energy needs by providing shade in summer and a windbreak in winter.

Facts about the benefits provided by planting one tree

1. It absorbs over a ton of harmful greenhouse gases over its lifetime (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency).

2. It produces enough oxygen for four people every day (Tree Canada Foundation).

3. It provides the equivalent cooling effect of ten room-size air conditioners operating 20 hours a day (U.S. Department of Agriculture).

4. It provides an estimated $273 of environmental benefits in every year of its life (American Forests).


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