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The Challenges Facing Governments To Preserve The Enviroment

5545 words - 22 pages

IntroductionDesertificationRadioactive WastesDeforestationOzone layerGlobal WarmingLand PollutionAir PollutionWater PollutionIntroductionSince the dawn of time, we, humans have always been depending in some way or the other on the Earth's resources and the saga is still going on but to keep it ongoing for our future generations remains a challenge. Yet each community, each country strives for survival and prosperity with little regard for its impact on others. Some consume the Earth's resources at such a rate that it would leave little for future generations or worse there might not be left at all. Consequently others, many more in number, consume far too little and live with the prospect of hunger, disease and premature death.Yet progress has been made. Throughout much of the world, children born today can expect to live longer and be better educated than their parents. In many parts, the new-born can also expect a higher standard of living in a wider sense. Such progress provides hope as we contemplate the improvements still needed, and also, as we face our failures to make this Earth a safer and sounder home for us and for those who are to come.The failures that we need to correct arise both form poverty and from the short-sighted way in which we have often pursued prosperity. Poor people are forced to overuse environmental resources to survive form day to day, and impoverishment of their environment further impoverishes them, making their survival ever more difficult and uncertain. The prosperity obtained in some parts of the World is often precarious , as it has been secured through farming ,forestry and industrial practices that bring profit and progress only over the short term.Societies have faced such pressures in the past and, as many desolate ruins remind us, sometimes succumbed to them. But generally theses pressures were local. Today the scale of our interventions in nature is increasing and the physical effects of our decisions spilt across national frontiers. The growth in economic interaction between nations amplifies the wider consequences of national decisions. Economics and ecology bind us in ever-tightening networks. Today, many region face risks of irreversible damage to the human environment that threatens the basis for human progress.Environmental stress has often been seen as the result of the growing demand on scarce resources and the pollution generated by the rising living standards of the relatively affluent. But poverty itself pollutes the environment, creating environmental stress in a different way. Those who are poor and hungry will often destroy their immediate environment in order to survive. They will cut down forest, their livestock will overgraze grasslands, they will destroy marginal lands; and in growing numbers they will crowd into congested cities. The cumulative effect of these changes is so far reaching as to make poverty itself a major global scourge.On the other hand, where economic growth had led to...

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