Concern With Earth
We should all be very concerned about our future on Earth as human beings. We may not be at such an immediate risk of burning to death, but our future descendants are. Every year, the overall temperature has gone up slowly. Eventually Earth will be too hot to live on, and the human race will become extinct! The best way to save our future is to start now. Americans should be conscientious of global warming and should watch their CO2 emissions because increasing CO2 concentrations means an increase in Earth’s temperature.
Being conscientious of global warming means making smart decisions on fossil fuel burning. As we all know fossil fuels are a nonrenewable resource that produces CO2, which is detrimental to our atmosphere. We, Americans should take the initiative to use renewable resources such as battery power, or solar power. Automobile companies have already created state-of-the-art solar power and electronic cars as an alternate to gas powered cars that burn lots of fossil fuel.
We use automobiles every day as transportation. Unfortunately automobiles emit so much carbon dioxide. In fact as Bill McKibben says “we emit so much more carbon dioxide now than we did a decade ago in part because our fleet or cars and trucks actually has gotten steadily less fuel efficient for the past 10 years” (325). The media has always had an impact on many people’s lifestyles, and in this day and age, where hip-hop culture has been highly advertised, driving large SUV’s has become very popular. Rap artists sing about their Cadillac Escalades, Lincoln Navigators, and their Hummers. In Bjorn Lomborg says “we have been indoctrinated by the media, where we see the TV characters as reference points for our own lives” (328). Little do they know that their SUVs they drive burn so much more gas than a car. SUVs release a tremendous amount of CO2 into the atmosphere and are very unnecessary to most of the population who drive them.
As McKibben states that we live in a “heedless, supersized society” (325). People are buying these vehicles based on looks, rather than having concern about gas mileage and the amount of CO2 the vehicle emits. Especially since automobiles have become a major part of daily life, we need to be aware of the gas mileage of the vehicle because there are so many thousands of cars on the road emitting so much CO2 into the atmosphere. If everyone drove an SUV, there would be so much CO2 being emitted into the atmosphere and there would be immense global warming.
If we don’t have to drive, we shouldn’t! Taking a bicycle to work does not harm the environment, and also it can be a good form of exercise. In Alan Durning’s essay, he argues that free parking is ” a major cause of the nation’s unquenchable thirst for gasoline and automobile use” (330). With excessive parking available in cities and around town, we seem to feel that we have almost nothing to gain by leaving our cars at home (331). An interesting statistic Durning notes is that if millions of workers across the country left their cars at home and paid at least an extra $2500 for parking at work, this would save 2.5 million barrels of oil a day (332).
Decreasing the number of free parking available would obviously decrease the number of automobile commuters. The land used for parking could be used for other more important structures. “And, as drivers begin to face the full environmental and social costs of their decisions, auto use would decrease” (331) which will result in less fossil fuel burning.
We Americans need more advertising about global warming around the cities and communities. Youngsters need to be educated about the matter because they are the future. They need to be aware of the dangers of the future. Bjorn Lomborg wrote in his essay that global warming is “not anywhere the most important problem in the world” (329). There are by far much more important matters that need to be taken care of, such as the war against terrorism, but dangers of global warming must not be forgotten. We should not spend trillions of dollars on preventing global warming. We should just spend enough money to educate Americans to be considerate of the situation of global warming at hand. This small investment now, will be a big investment for the future.
In Lomborg’s essay, he argues that cost of global warming would be about $5 trillion, thus proving that cutting back CO2 emissions would be very costly (329). In the meantime, we should devote lots of time towards research in solar power and other forms of energy. It is a fact that immediate actions toward decreasing CO2 emissions is very costly, therefore we need to work in the long run. If we take baby steps toward diminishing CO2 emission, we will eventually be making big strides for our future against global warming.
To some it may be ridiculous to be considerate toward the future of planet Earth because the Earth may not suffer from immense global warming within our lifetime. We should, however be concerned for the future. Our grandchildren, even our children may be in danger of global warming. We need to realize that our SUV that we are driving now may be detrimental for Earth’s future.
In all, we need to be conscientious of global warming. This means having knowledge that our future descendants and our planet Earth could become overheated from global warming, thus killing off all life on this wonderful planet. We do not want to wait till the last second, when things are too late. We are at a time where we can make a difference. Choosing cars with low gas mileage is a good idea. These cars are environmentally friendly and that’s what we need. If we have the option to walk to work, we should do so. Like Alan Durning argues, free parking should be completely abandoned. Lets keep the cars on the road to the minimum because cars emit CO2, which is harmful to our Earth, and CO2 only increases global warming. We should advertise to the public how dangerous global warming is. Educating youngsters, the future of us, about global warming is an excellent way to go.
Imagine all the beautiful things on Earth, gone. Gone because of the fact we did not act now, and gone because of the fact we weren’t conscientious of global warming. Lets start doing something, baby steps that in the long run will be very productive in our war against global warming.