Is it fair to restrict the growth of developing countries because of climate change?
Climatic change is a fundamental problem that is affecting developing nations, as well as developed nations of the world. However, as Nath and Behera pointed that developing nations are likely to be faced with a greater incidence of the outcome of climatic change than developed nations. This is because developed nations have the resources to deal with the outcomes of climatic changes and are already setting up mitigation strategies with respect to it.
The earth has limited carrying capacity and therefore increased population growth is likely to do more harm than good. Restricting the growth of developing nations can be examined under two viewpoints that include economic growth and population growth. Moreover, the climate is mostly threatened in the bid to achieve economic growth. The developed nations can be declared responsible for putting the climate at risk since the industrial revolution as they have released tremendous amount of pollutants into the atmosphere.
The developed nations, in their bid, to become as comfortable as the developing nations, increase the amount of pollutants they release to the atmosphere (Nath and Behera 141-162). However, the question is: should the growth of developing nations be restricted to contain climatic change? In terms of economic growth, the answer is obviously no but in terms of population growth, the answer is probably yes.
Economic growth of developing nations should not be restricted because of climatic change. The reason for this answer is simple. Nath and Behera pointed out that developing countries can counter the negative effects of climatic change by adapting to the changing climate. However, the report noted that such adaptation may is probably difficult to achieve or nearly impossible because of the lack of sufficient financial and technological resources. Thus, economic growth is essential to help developing nations in order to counter the effects of climatic changes. That is why such growth should not be restricted. Developed nations such as the United States, most European countries, Japan and so forth have already set in place mitigation strategies to deal with the effects of climatic changes.
Nonetheless, population growth in developing needs to be controlled. Population growth is on the increase at an exponential rate whereas the resources are finite. Thus, the per capita in these countries of the world is approaching zero. Nath and Behera also stated that developing nations’ vulnerability to increasing climatic growth is worsened by the widespread poverty, heavy density of population and excessive dependence on natural resource. The population growth in developing nations is alarming and therefore needs to be controlled. As a result of the population growth, standard of living is falling in these nations. It, therefore, makes sense to restrict population growth in these countries to deal with climatic changes. Both the developing and developing countries must play important roles to deal with climatic changes, and this can be achieved by controlling carbon emission through awareness programs, education and so forth.
Discussion Activity-Comments on other Student Post
Ongoing through other students' posts, I realize that they agreed well with my viewpoint on restricting the growth of developing countries because of climatic changes. However, they opined that some key components must be put in place in order to engage the developing world. These include education for women, providing incentives for irrigation, water retention and so forth. But as per my viewpoint, implementation of these components need support from government, non-government organizations, donor agencies and so forth.
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My discussion simply points hands to the fact that population growth in developing countries should be controlled but not economic growth. Controlling population growth and ensuring economic growth will help developing countries to combat climatic change. The priority way of doing this is through public enlightenment and education.
Nath, P.K., and Behera, B. “A critical review of the impact of and adaptation to change in developed and developing countries”. Environment, Development, and Sustainability, 13.1, (2011):141-162. Print.
Water is very vital natural resource essential for sustaining life on the earth. This is why water sustainability is a very important subject. Schnoor pointed out that land use pressure is one of the factors responsible for changing water characteristics. Land use change can cause precipitous changes, and other factors that can also result to this include population growth, climatic change, global poverty and so forth. EPA mentioned that land use can impact on water in several ways including the release of pollutants, agricultural activities, residential and commercial development and so forth.
Agricultural activities have a great impact on water quality. For instance, when fertilizers containing nitrogen and phosphorus are applied to plants, they can runoff to streams and rivers causing pollution. In addition, livestock manures can also cause pollution to nearby water sources which will reduce water quality (EPA).
Adaptation and mitigation are two strategies that can be used in dealing with climatic changes. Nath and Behera pointed out that the mitigation strategy can be formulated in order to deal with the issue in question and avoid it. For instance, developed nations have already set up measures to counter the effects of climatic change. This is what mitigation is all about. On the other hand, adaptation comes into play when mitigation fails or cannot be applied. With adaptation, it becomes possible to live comfortably, or almost comfortably, with the climatic change effects.
Adaptation strategies can help us survive climatic changes. Some of these strategies include using flood resistant and easily operational materials when building in floodplains. In addition, I believed that resolute political is essential to achieve a successful adaptation.
The Johnson Foundation made it clear that the U.S water infrastructure was largely built on systems designed during the 19th and early 20th century and therefore is outdated. The aging of the infrastructure poses some problems because it is not capable of handling the current consumption, economic and environmental problems. For instance, up to 6 billion gallons (14 percent of the daily use) of treated waters in the U.S is lost each day due to leaky and aging pipes.
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Water use is a tragedy of the commons because as described by Hardin, it is abused by most people, yet nobody is held accountable for the abuse. As Schnoor described, everyone wants to use most of the resources and even go as far as abusing it because it is owned by everybody.
Discussion Activity- Comments on other Student Posts
As per my viewpoint, I agree with what other students say about regulating the commons in terms of water use with all rights owned by companies or individuals. This is because it will go a long way to checkmate the abuse on the natural resource. However, it would also be effective to make it harder for the people to obtain that make them more responsible in utilization of resources. In general, proper sustainability approaches are the key to ensuring water conservation and regulation can help to solve the issue of the abuse.
EPA. “Land Use Impacts on Water”. Web. 13 Dec. 13, 2014 from www.epa.gov/greenkit/toolwq.htm
Hardin, G. “The tragedy of the commons”. Science, 162.3859,(1968):1243–1248. Web. 12 Dec, 2014 from http://www.sciencemag.org/content/162/3859/1243.full.
Nath, P.K., and Behera, B. “A critical review of the impact of and adaptation to change in developed and developing countries”. Environment, Development, and Sustainability, 13.1, (2011):141-162.
Schnoor, J. L.”Water sustainability in a changing world”. The 2010 Clarke Prize Lecture, National Water Research Institute. (2012), Web. 13, Dec.2014 from http://www.nwri-usa.org/pdfs/2010ClarkePrizeLecture.pdf.
The Johnson Foundation. “Report Taps Into Innovative Financing to Secure Future for Sustainability Water Infrastructure”. Web 13 Dec., 2014 from www.johnsonfdn.org/resources/%20water%20infrastructure%20press%20release
Air pollutant emission indicator summary at Mildred Lake Plant Site station showed average of the pollutant on 2012 during the period of 2003-2012. As per this summary, nitrogen oxide are recorded to be 13,577.7 tons, sulfur oxide 72,970.9 tons, and volatile organic compounds (VOC) 7,769.98 tons. In addition, the levels for carbon monoxide, ammonia, fine particulate matter, respirable particulate matter and total particulate matter were observed as 5,581.12 tons, 1,195.33 tons, 633.94, 1,609.87 and 2,601.0 tons respectively.
This indicates PM2.5 level about 633 tons in my community but didn't provide data regarding O3 .But a high level of ground-level ozone persists in the region. This data is calculated overtime between 2003 and 2012. Hsu pointed out that since 1999, the highest concentrations of ozone and nitrogen dioxide occurred in April and winter respectively. The high ozone concentration in April (spring) is mostly predominant in the northern hemisphere. From spatial analysis, the report found out that ozone concentrations were low near the emission sources probably due to local ozone titration.
Sulfur Oxides is the most dominant pollutant followed by NOx .that were observed about 72,970.9 and 13,577.7 tons respectively. VOCs (volatile organic compounds) are also major air pollutants in Alberta. The level of VOCs are about 7,769.98 tons at Mildred Lake Plant Site station. These are mostly released from industries including petrochemical industries, Oil extraction activities, and refineries. Mildred Lake Plant Site is the largest emitter of greenhouse gas in Canada and has emitted up to 12,359,420 tons of carbon dioxide equivalent in 2012. According to Timoney & Lee (2009), the emission of greenhouse gasses including VOCs, nitrogen dioxides, and others is critical in Alberta and is a major issue of concern to Canadian lawmakers.
Ozone and fine particulate matters are very significant in Alberta because of their menaces on the human health. For instance, Timoney and Lee pointed out that the exposure to PM2.5 is associated with risks of cardiac arrest. Other pollutants such as VOCs, sulfur dioxides, mercury, PAHs, arsenic and so forth are also very dangerous and can pose a lot of risks to human health. Some of these pollutants are carcinogenic. Ozone itself is a major pollutant, highly significant in Alberta. It causes respiratory problems such as asthma, bronchitis and so forth
This is undeniable fact that air quality is greatly affected by these pollutants in Alberta, and this has raised a lot of alarms and posed serious problems. Timoney and Lee made it clear that pollution from tar sands industrial activities in Canada not only affect the ecosystem but also affect the human health. It affects the air quality and in fact, Canada air is up to 73% more polluted than the U.S and a lot of the pollution comes from this source.
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British Columbia pointed out that factors that influence air pollution include topography (terrain) such as mountains and valleys; weather such as temperature, wind, air turbulence, rainfall and so forth. In addition, the physical as well as chemical characteristics of pollutants are the cause of concern. For instance, topography and weather can prevent pollutants from mixing and dispersing, and when that occurs, the pollutants will be trapped within the area.
Parliament of Canada outlined laws that are already in place against air pollution in Canada. The Clean Air Act that was approved in 1970 but replaced with Environmental Protection Act in 2000 and in 2006, the second Clean Air Act (Bill C-30) was introduced. The air pollution acted details plans to reduce air pollution by about 45 to 65% in 2050.
British Columbia. “Factors Affecting Air Quality”. Web. 13 Dec. 13, 2014 from www.bcairquality.ca/101/air-quality-factors.html
Hsu Y.M.. “Trends in Passively-Measured Ozone, Nitrogen Dioxide and Sulfur Dioxide Concentrations in the Athabasca Oil Sands Region of Alberta, Canada”. Aerosol and Air Quality Research, 13.5, (2013): 1448-1463. Print.
Mildred Lake Plant Site, Fort McMurray, Alberta “Interactive Indicator Maps - Environmental Indicators - Environment Canada”. (2014), Maps-cartes.ec.gc.ca, Web. 13 Dec. 2014, from http://maps-cartes.ec.gc.ca/indicators-indicateurs/detailPage.aspx?lang=en&type=air_emissions_sox&objectid=490
Parliament of Canada. Web. 13 Dec., 2014 from www.parl.gc.ca/About/Parliament/LegislativeSummaries/bills_Is.asp?Language=E&Parl=39&Ses=1&Mode=1&Is=C30&source=library_prb,
Timoney K.P and Lee P. “Does the Alberta Tar Sands Industry Pollute? The Scientific Evidence”. The Open Conservation Biology Journal, 3, (2009):65-81, Print.
I would choose bioenergy as the most suitable source of energy in my area because of the availability of lots of agricultural residues and wastes. In fact, Simonyan and Fasina pointed out that Nigeria is capable of producing up to 2.01 EJ of energy from the 168.49 million tons of agricultural wastes and residues. It can be potentially generated each year. Moreover, due to the abundance of sunlight, sufficient rainfall, and dams, solar energy and hydroelectricity can also fit in well into energy generation in Nigeria. However, bioenergy would be much more cost efficient and quite efficient. Nigeria does not have sufficient wind and geothermal resources for them to serve as a source of energy, but it has lots of agricultural wastes and proven reserves of biogas.
However, there are economic, environmental and social costs and benefits to consider here. Benefits of bioenergy in Nigeria include creation of employment and wealth, rural market expansion, poverty reduction and so forth. The challenges or limitation of bioenergy includes the use of large areas of land, lack of infrastructure, fear of food shortage, environmental problems, lack of skilled labor and inadequate funds.
Comments on other Student Post
A lot of discussion by other students focused on environmental problems of energy sources. Bioenergy poses some environmental concerns as pointed out by Simonyan and Fasina because of the pollutions it produces from agro-based industries. Solar energy, hydroelectricity and wind are perhaps the most efficient here because they are clean energy and do not produce any waste. However, bioenergy produces minimal wastes and therefore is relatively clean. These factors and much more must be appropriately put into consideration when choosing a source of energy for a region in order to ensure efficiency, save cost and provide adequate energy sufficient for the region.
Simonyan K.J and Fasina O. “Biomass resources and bioenergy potentials in Nigeria”. African Journal of Agricultural Research, 8.40,(2013): 4975-4989.Print.