Volunteer writer, Vicki Phillips, reports on the recent revelations about our world, offering some advice on what we can do to help prevent climate catastrophe.
With the recent publication of the 2018 Living Planet Report, horrifying statistics have been spreading across social media about the extensive damage the planet is undergoing. Essential to human survival, the importance of the environment cannot be described since it forms the building blocks of our society. The necessity of our planets survival should and must be part of international agenda, having the potential to enable future discoveries in medicine and allow us to continue to be economically successful, as nature provides $125 trillion a year in providing services for humans.
With the astonishing statistic that there has been a 60% fall in wildlife population in the last 40 years, something drastic needs to change. We as drivers of consumption need to consider the pressures we are putting on the environment to fulfill our needs, causing deforestation, pollution, hunting and over-exploitation.
The recent release and banning of the Iceland Christmas advert, identifies the issues with palm oil and the shocking fact that deforestation and destruction of habitat leads to 25 orangutans’ deaths per day. Why has it been banned? Because it is considered too politically complex an issue, despite its educational qualities. Regardless, palm oil is in so many products, 50% of the products in the supermarket, that even just cutting down on some of these that contain it could help the cause. Therefore, next time you purchase, shampoo, chocolate, margarine, try to find one that contains an alternative to palm oil.
A huge amount of plastic, estimated 12.7 million tonnes, is ending up in the oceans each year. Obviously, this is having devastating effects on the marine life, entering every level of the ocean food chain. To help this, reducing plastic is essential. Reduce, reuse and recycle are key. Big companies need to stop using plastic as packaging and use alternatives and a successful attempt of is the reduction of plastic straws across the country, with key chain companies now supplying paper straws.
The Living Planet Report concludes with stating that we may be the last that can act to reverse the trend on the environment between now and 2020. With such a small amount of time left, when carrying out your everyday life, think, what can you do to help? Be a smart consumer, stop supplying the demand for products containing palm oil, packaged in plastic, support the WWF, sign government petitions to get them to notice the problem. Even a little bit of change to your lifestyle can help.
Find out more about the Living Planet Report here.
Featured image by: Omeiza Haruna