OPINION: GO GREEN REGARDLESS OF YOUR STANCE
Climate change has become a phrase that can spark a debate in no time at all. The debate of whether or not mankind is speeding up the process of global warming has become not a question of science any more, but a political statement. While this topic does seem to rile controversy, should it?
Considering such a divide among people in our country over the matter, there is a question that nags at me daily, why are people so opposed to “going green”? When you look at the benefits of living a more environmentally conscious lifestyle other than the planet heating up, it seems that anyone could find a reason to be on board.
For starters, becoming a friend to the environment makes sense from a fiscal perspective. Consider your utility bills like electricity and water. Conserving these most basic of resources can save not only our planet, but also our wallets. When you are less wasteful with water or electricity, you save the countless dollars that would need to be spent for those utilities. When enough people turn off lights more frequently, or do not leave the faucet running unnecessarily, it saves households and a lot of hard earned cash.
A second reason to live green no matter your stance is simply preserving our ecosystems.
The way we live our lives as consumers has a considerable impact on natural ecosystems that will and do affect us. The idea that every living thing on the planet is connected may seem like a hippie dippy idea, but it is one that is nonetheless true. When trash is being dumped into our oceans, or bee colonies die off at an alarming rate, the human race is put in grave peril, because believe it or not we are all dependent on those ecosystems surviving for one reason or another.
Bees for example, help pollinate 30 billion dollars worth of US crops, and their rapid decline in numbers could mean disaster for civilization as we know it.
A third, and no less important, point in favor of searching for more environmentally friendly methods of living is sustainability.
As of now, the primary source of energy in our world is the use of fossil fuels, which are not sustainable. There is a point where fossil fuels will run out, and even given the areas of coal and natural gases, that too will only carry us so far. Therefore, it is imperative to our future to invest in more sustainable energy sources such as wind and air. If you want to look at a more political stance, the U.S. investing in mainstreaming another outlet along the lines of solar energy would break us of our dependence on foreign oil.
The point is that whether you “believe” in climate change or not, there is no reason to snub the idea of being more efficient. There are more reasons to care about recycling, alternative fuels, etc. than a warming planet alone. The only thing that will come of living green is making a more sustainable world for our kids and grandkids. We as a people must look further than our own lifespan, and our leaders must care about more than the next election.
“A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they will never sit in.” – Greek Proverb