Estimated reading time: 5 minutes
If you are short on time, here is a quick summary of the 4 most serious problems facing humanity:
- Global recession
- Limited reserves of natural and artificial resources
- Climatic change
We are all aware that the world is struggling in many areas at the moment. Take out of the picture the global recession which is at the forefront of the problems, and the other problems still remain, even though they have taken a backseat. There is still a limited supply of natural and non-natural resources in the world; climate change is always an issue, and there is the non-avoidable subject of poverty that the world faces on a daily basis. As every day passes, the situation gets worse, and there is no doubt around the world that more needs to be done about the ″hot topics″ of the past; otherwise, the situation will get to the point where nothing can physically be done, leaving earth a glorified ticking time bomb.
Where does the burden fall? Who takes on this responsibility? Many say it should be the world superpowers, alongside NATO and G8. The correct answer to this question is that everybody should be doing their bit to help. Now this story probably sounds like hundreds that you have read before, and this may be true, but it does not change the facts. Remember, everyone can make a difference, and if everybody adopts the attitude that an individual cannot make a difference then a change will not happen. While governments are always trying to make changes, it is impossible for them to implement these changes if the people they need to target do not listen to the points they are trying to make.
At the moment, we are creating 44% more CO2 than the world can cope with. If this rate continues rising, then we will be living at 100% more than we can afford to by 2030. This means that the amount of land and sea we would need is twice the amount that we actually have, and we cannot spawn another planet; therefore, something needs to be done now to reduce the percentage. To put this in perspective, just 50 years ago, everybody was living well within their means using just 50% of what it could afford to in terms of CO2 production. To limit its carbon footprint a country needs its government to invest in renewable energy, and while the majority of countries are investing in equipment like solar panels and wind turbines, it is not happening quickly enough.
It seems two situations can be solved with one solution. Countries like Bangladesh, Nepal, and Haiti live at just 50% of their bio-capacity. Countries like the United States live at more than three times their means. If the United States decreases their amount and their costs, and sources this to the other countries, then it seems both poverty and the carbon footprint problems can be addressed, but action needs to be taken now. The amount of CO2 we produce is not the only problem governments have to deal with. There are fossil fuels burning constantly which is damaging the Ozone layer causing global warming. Deforestation is adding to the global warming problem and wiping out animal species. Poverty in third-world countries is causing around 25,000 deaths a day. These are shocking facts that cannot be ignored. To many it seems that the superpowers are making changes, but not to the extent that they could be as money is being poured into sectors that are worthless. The way around this is to change the problems at the ground level, which means the people need to start making a change to the way they live their lives.
The facts of poverty are shocking when you look at the whole situation. Everybody knows that poverty is an issue, but does not know the extent of the issue. As mentioned before too many people die every day from poverty. The facts prove that there is enough food for the whole world every single day, but due to poverty, third-world counties cannot afford the food. While there are programs, such as ″food for work″, and ″food for education″, there is not much more being carried out to prevent poverty, just a lot of work being carried out to solve the problem that we are facing here and now. There is plenty of money donated to charities, but the money is going toward solving the problem here and now, not to developing ″ground level″ solutions to solve the problem in the long run. The way in which the money is being sourced needs to be reviewed. NATO and G8 have recently called for a severe overview of the shortage of world resources and poverty situations. While this overhaul has been long due, it does not mean the end of the problem; instead, it is just the start of a long road, however, if we deal with this problem now, and start teaching this problem to children, then everybody may start to wake up and take action.
Now, this article is not saying that everybody should donate all of their money to third-world countries, walk just about everywhere, and use no energy; however, people should be more concerned about what they are doing. Take a look at your current situation and you could probably review it in several areas, which will not affect your life seriously but will change how you save energy. At the moment, your laptop/desktop computer must be on, but is it on charge? Does it need to be on charge? Are you lights on? Do they need to be? Is your television on or on standby? Can you change this? If all of the small points are changed it will save you money firstly, then say you use this money and give the difference to a charity, now you are saving energy and giving money to help solve third-world issues. It is small points like this that can be altered, and if these points are altered by everybody then energy and money will be saved.
The ever-growing and increasingly worrying fact is that future generations will suffer due to our current negligence. At the moment, it seems that each generation is blaming the next generation, but this is not fair, and it needs to stop somewhere. If everybody that overuses energy, walked to the shops instead of driving, donated some money to third-world counties once in a while, and invested money in their property with energy-saving light bulbs, then the charts that appear to be scary at the moment will start to level out and eventually decrease back to an ″acceptable level″. This and only this is the only way forward.
If you want to find out about the biggest disasters facing humanity, check out our article on this topic: What are the biggest disasters facing humanity?
If you want to find out about the G7 summit for protection of the environment, check out our article on this topic: 300 drones. Act now to protect the planet!
[Photo from Unsplash]