Environmental pollution has over the past few decades been a subject matter of discussion among many states. The main reason behind this can be associated with the increasing rate of environmental degradation and the adverse effects that this reason can impose on the well-being of human existence (Zhao, 2010). The United Nations Environmental Program ( UNEP) has been holding annual general meetings where stakeholders from all over the world meet and discuss crucial factor and measures affecting the environment. It has become adequately clear that over the years crucial environmental factors have become the prime subjects of discussion globally right before economic issues (Buzzle, 2010). Environmental degradation can be classified into land, air, water and noise pollution. Experts normally attribute most pollution to the environment to be induced by humans. In the long run, it is important to note that environmental degradation affects both ecological and the human health conditions.
The frequent international forums have been aimed at mitigating and reducing the effects of humans on the environment. Various protocols have been signed by governments and common laws have also been enacted in an attempt to find the best solution to this problem. Generally the existence of humans and the well being of the ecosystem are two dependent variables. Their sustainability and survival depend on each other (Zhao, 2010). During the 19th century, the world was mostly undergoing a series of industrialization which was associated by tremendous growth in population. Commercialization and business prosperity drove the minds of many individuals at the expense of the ecosystem (Dong, 2012). Environmental activist started airing they voices then and started working towards sensitizing people about the benefits of maintain the environment (Buzzle, 2010). An assumption was reached that human beings are the major stressors of the ecosystem. This paper is going to analytically discuss the effects of human beings on the environment; it will highlight the major causes and explore the tentative solutions to this problem.
In the utmost bid of human beings trying to improve their standards of living, they have been conducting profitable or motive oriented practices that at the same time has been harming the ecosystem and jeopardizing human survival (Zhao, 2010). It is important to note the crucial causes of pollution before discussing the effects of humans on pollution. The causes of pollution can be well understood in comparison with the type of pollution. One of the common types of pollution is water pollution; this normally occurs when waste products and harmful chemical contaminants are released into water outlets which later follow water streams and accumulate in large masses of water (Zhao, 2010). The water will in turn become unfit for human or animal consumption. Another notable type of pollution is air pollution; it has been among the major subjects of discussion of environmental degradation this type of pollution mainly occurs when harmful substances are released to the atmosphere resulting in pollution of air which is harmful to human health. The major air pollutants include chlorofluorocarbons (CFC), carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxides mainly produced by vehicles and others emitted by industries. The best assumption deducted from this is that the factor are mostly human related. Soil pollution is another type of pollution that results when chemicals are released to the soil or due to underground leakages (Buzzle, 2010). The contributors of this type of pollution are mainly chemicals sprayed on plants, metals and hydrocarbons. Noise pollution is also another one which comprises of noise released from industries, aircraft or high intensity sonar systems. Radioactive pollution is also a popular type of pollution that entails activities in nuclear fission released from nuclear power plants (Ihunweze, 2011).
Human activities have resulted hugely to environmental degradation. The effects of humans on the environment have been realized in the following ways;
Depletion of the Ozone layer
The depletion of the ozone layer is generally attributed with air pollution whereby harmful substances are released to the environment (Frank, 2008). The ozone layer which lies in the atmosphere normally serves the function of protecting and shielding people from excess ultra violet rays. The release of harmful contaminants like CFC’s or carbon monoxide usually harms the ozone layer by breaking down ozone molecules from the ozone layer (Zhao, 2010). If excess UV light enters the earth the effects can be detrimental to human and general organisms living in the earth, AN example is, excess UV light in plants normally destroys bacteria called Cyanobacteria that are vital for plant production. To humans, excess UV lights can lead to skin cancer (Frank, 2008).
Increased human activities like industrialization has led to major destruction of forests and general destruction of trees human population has led to a large amount of destruction in the natural resources, and deforestation is one of them (Frank, 2008). The need for land to use in constructions, for example factories and building of homes has led to the need for human beings to look for options; the process of cutting down of trees. Deforestation lives the land bare and in that case encouraging the washing away of soil; soil erosion. Trees help the prevention of soil erosion since they hold soil particles together (Zhao, 2010). Tan selfish need to want to occupy land that was intended for the natural resources contributes to the destruction of the environment.
Killing of wild Animals
In the olden days, human beings were known as hunters and gathers (Dong, 2012). Came from hunting, and these animals were mainly wild animals. Even though human beings are still in this activity, it is now done for different reasons; commercial reasons. Man hunts wild animals for their skin and hooves which are valuable in the business world. Wild animals are not only important for their body parts, but are also important in tourism attraction (Frank, 2008). However man due to his selfish reasons forgets this fact and goes ahead to kill these animals so as to satisfy his own wishes (Ihunweze, 2011). This leads to the reduction in numbers of these animals which are important to the economy of the country since they bring money to the country through tourism. Research has shown that 37 species of animals in has become extinct in a period of the last 50 years and the main reason for this is human activities (Frank, 2008).
Gathering from the information above, man has continued to destroy the environment in many different ways despite the impacts that he seems to cause with this activities. Most of the activities that man undertakes that destroy the environment seem to be of selfish nature; to fulfill his own ambitions and wishes. Some examples of human activities mentioned in the article that have contributed to the destruction of the environment include; deforestation, animal hunting and the depletion of the ozone layer. These are some among the activities that man engages in that contribute to the destruction of the environment. It is important that people are educated about these activities and their contribution to the destruction of the environment in order to stop it for good.
Buzzle. "How do Humans Affect The Environment." (2010):
Dong, Hailiang. 4 September 2012. 20 April 2013
Frank, Lawrence. November 2008. 20 April 2013
Ihunweze, Fortune. What Are the Causes of Environmental Pollution? 15 May 2011.
Zhao, Xue-yan. 2010. 20 April 2013