By Atarah Senn
What does the environment mean to you? What have you observed about the environment in which you reside in? What changes do you see taking place in a larger scale to the environment?
The term ‘environment’ is usually commonly used to describe the natural environment. This means that the total of all living and non-living things what surrounds us. It also includes all factors and conditions that influence our growth and development. These factors include light, temperature, water and atmospheric gases. The environment has over time changed and still it is in the process of changing. Some living things have the ability to adapt to these changes but others do not.
Words associated with the topic of environment are popular today. Let’s have a look of these:
Carbon Dioxide (CO2)
This is a colourless chemical compound gas released into the atmosphere as a by product of burning carbon and when vegetable and animal matter composes. CO2 is one of the many greenhouse gases.
Gases present in the atmosphere which absorb the sun’s energy and heat. This includes water vapour, carbon dioxide (CO2),methane, nitrous oxide, halogenated fluorocarbons,ozone, perfluorinated carbons, and hydrofluorocarbons.
The continuous increase in greenhouse gases in the atmosphere which destroys the ozone layer which allows radiation from the sun to reach our atmosphere. The sun’s heat cannot escape and becomes trapped as if within a closed greenhouse. This heats the earth and is linked to climate change and negative changes in eco system.
The relationship between organisms and their environment. Commonly and informally used as a term for products and materials which are environmentally friendly.
A measured amount of greenhouse gases, primarily carbon dioxide which are released into the atmosphere by manufacture, transport, products, materials, activities.
A recorded and prominent change in the earth’s temperature over a long period of time, which changes local weather conditions. It is linked to global warming and human activities such as manufacture and transportation.
The increase in the earth’s surface and atmospheric temperature over a long period of time. This is linked to climate change, man-made human activities and the ongoing increase of greenhouse gases.
To prevent natural living resources from being used up through protection, preservation and limited use. Natural resources such as water, vegetation, animals, minerals and nutrients. This applies to non living resources such as old buildings and antiques.
Particles in water, air or earth which have a negative affect on human health and the environment.
The process of changing waste into new materials, products and packaging.
To go green
To make both a conscious and active decision to reduce the negative effect on the environment through your own lifestyle choices.