Why should you care, and how can you help?
Today marks our World Environment Day, a time to reflect on our personal, and collective, treatment of the Earth.
This is a day which seems particularly relevant given Brighton’s sole Green Party seat.
And, to mark the occasion, Caroline Lucas, Brighton Pavilion’s MP, spoke out about current environmental policy.
Lucas took the chance to open up “a proper debate about Britain’s energy future”.
She criticised the governments plans “to take a direct stake in the Wylfa nuclear power station” in North Wales, which is “estimated to cost an eye watering £20 billion”.
Lucas has decried the fact that this will soar “above the cost of offshore wind”, and went on to state that it is “blindingly obvious that renewables are the future”.
Whatever your politics, the facts suggest a need to rethink our environmental approaches.
- The Earth’s oceans contain an estimated 51 trillion microscopic pieces of plastic, weighing 269,000 tons
- Around 50% of plastic packaging is single use
- There are approximately 700 million cars today, they collectively create 900 million tons of carbon dioxide yearly
- In the UK alone, 40,000 deaths a year are linked to air pollution
- There are only around 29% of wild forests remaining today
- Over 30% of coral reefs have been destroyed, with global warming the major contributor
- Animal agriculture is responsible for around a fifth of greenhouse gas emissions globally
What can you do to help the environment?
To ebb the tide of environmental damage, major changes are needed.
The government will need to invest in renewable energy. Companies will need to cut down on the creation of plastic. Agricultural industries will need to be more efficient.
So, while it would be ludicrous to place the burden of saving the world upon your shoulders alone, there are still small steps we can all take.
These include things like walking to work instead of driving. Replacing, recycling or reusing plastic items. Or cutting down on your consumption of meat.
Also, Brighton Sea Life Centre are hosting a beach clean this coming Sunday. Brighton’s beaches are notorious for the levels of plastic litter left behind on busy days.
The event takes place from 13:00-16:00, and is a great way to keep Brighton beautiful.
So, let’s give back to the Earth by making these small but potentially crucial changes!