How to help habitat conservation in your day to day life.
Friday, 4th of September, Wildlife Day.
Habitat conservation is important in maintaining biodiversity, an essential part of global food security. There is also the economic value in conserving natural habitats: financial profit can be made from tourist revenue, and resources can be exploited for economic profit, for example, timber.
Every year we lose numerous species to the growth and expansion of human beings, but through the effort of sanctuaries and preservation organisations, that rate is being slowed. These groups do amazing work, educating and bringing awareness to people everywhere, all while preserving these precious treasures from Mother Nature.
We also, can make a difference and help reducing the threats to wildlife, here’s how:
Wildlife must have places to find food, shelter and raise their young. Logging, oil and gas drilling, over-grazing and development all result in habitat destruction. Endangered species habitat should be protected and these impacts minimized. Parks, wildlife refuges, and other open space should be protected near your community.
The danger of overexploitation is that if too many individuals of a species are taken, then the species may not recover. Humans exploit lots of natural resources. For instance, they grow crops, catch fish, and rear livestock and poultry for food; they exploit fossil fuels for energy supply; they cut down timber, extract minerals, and collect water for various uses in industry, construction, and many aspects of daily life.
Reduce your exploitation and help conserve the natural resources by reusing, recycling, and growing your own food. For instance, plant a tree!
Many species are threatened by poaching. Large mammals like African elephants, tigers, and rhinoceros are traded for their thusks, skins, and horns.
- Ask before you buy and stick to certified products;
- Sign petitions;
- Report any illegal trade;
- Support international conservation organizations such as Greenpeace https://www.greenpeace.org.uk, World Wildlife Fund https://www.wwf.org.uk, etc.
Culling is the deliberate and selective killing of wildlife by governments for various purposes. The more general problem is that removing some animals from a population creates more space and food for those that are left, and can disrupt social controls on breeding. An example of this is shark culling in which “shark control” programs in Queensland and NSW (Australia) have killed thousands of sharks, as well as turtles, dolphin, whales and other marine life.
Pollution prevention protects the environment by conserving and protecting natural resources while strengthening economic growth through more efficient production in industry and less need for households, businesses and communities to handle the waste.
- The most basic solution for air pollution is to move away from fossil fuels, replacing them with alternative energies like solar, wind and geothermal.
- Use public transports or your bicycle;
- Use your fan instead of air-conditioning;
- Use a filter for your chimney;
- Avoid burning leaves or waste;
- Minimise clutter;
- Recycle, reuse, etc.
Rising temperatures, melting ice sheets, changes in precipitation patterns, severe droughts, more frequent heat waves, storm intensification, and rising sea levels are some of the effects of climate change. Phenomena like droughts, heatwaves, intense storms, and rising sea level directly lead to habitat destruction. Moreover, the species that are unable to cope with rapidly changing conditions will become extinct.
We can’t stop climate change, but we can prevent it getting much worse. The best thing we can all do is to put pressure on the government to act urgently. We can also make changes in our everyday lives to reduce our carbon emissions.
- Eat less meat. Meat and dairy production is responsible for 14% of global climate-changing emissions. Power up on plants!
- Eat the food you buy;
- Avoid waste;
- Move to a green bank, that invests in the type of things you agree with;
- Power your home with renewable energy: While the UK government is putting steps in place for us to use renewable energy, there is still a lot of climate-wrecking gas. So an energy-guzzling home is bad for the climate as well as your pocket.
- Take the train, not the plane. Think about all the beautiful places in the UK you can reach without flying;
- Ask the government to continue climate action: Sign petitions;
- Take action in your community: people just like you are coming together to develop practical, local solutions and make their towns and cities more climate-friendly, join them!