(iii) Climate change (as per NASA, October 2009):
For 650,000 years, atmospheric CO2 has never been above 300 parts per million. But current levels are very high due to the Industrial Revolution. Increased greenhouse gases and the greenhouse effect are feared to contribute to an overall warming of the Earth’s climate, leading to a global warming. The 1900 was the warmest century during the last 1000 years. Due to global warming: agricultural yield will decline; biodiversity will be lost, etc.
(iv) Scarcity (as per UNDP estimates, June 2009):
Due to climate change effects an additional 600 million people will face food shortages and malnourishment in the coming years, 1.8 billion will struggle to find water.
Many environmental problems arise from the abuse, misuse and overuse of natural resources by humans. The world is heading for an environmental disaster, and humans do not want to see, hear, or talk about it. If it continues, humanity will no longer be able to co-exist with nature.
Development activities are necessary for the humans in order to enhance the quality of life and fulfill the needs of a fast growing population. However, it should be done in such a manner that natural resources are not exploited.
Developments must meet the present needs without compromising the ability of the future generations to meet their own needs. Thus, it is essential to learn about the causes and effects of current environmental issues of importance so that their innovative solutions can be implemented.