What is Environmental Ethics?
Environmental ethics is a branch of environmental philosophy that studies the ethical relationship between human beings and environment. It has given a new dimension to the conservation of natural resources.
What are major Ethical Environmental Issues?
The issues which cause dangers to environment with a moral perspective in them are known as ethical environmental issues. Environment has a direct or indirect effect on the way we live and ethical environmental issues arise when we ignore this fact. Hence we ought to protect our environment and solve the ethical environmental issues our earth is facing now-a-days. There are many ethical environmental issues some of them are stated below: 1. Green-house Effect. 2. Ozone Depletion. 3. Air Pollution. 4. Acid Rain. 5. Urban Run-off. 6. Land Pollution. 7. Deforestation. 8. Nuclear Development.
1. Greenhouse Effect
Any gas in the atmosphere that absorbs and emits radiations in the thermal infrared range is called a greenhouse gas. The greenhouse effect is a process by which thermal radiation from a planetary surface is absorbed by atmospheric greenhouse gases, and is re-radiated in all directions. This process repeats over and over again, trapping the radiations in the atmosphere. This is one of the major causes of global warming.
Consequences: Global warming is causing the Earth to lose its snow cover; glaciers are melting, the sea-level is rising, and a lot of arctic floral and faunal species are on the verge of extinction.
2. Ozone Depletion
The ozone enveloping around the Earth is depleting in volume consistently since 1980s. This is largely due to the effect of halocarbon refrigerants (such as CFC, halons, freons, etc.). Halocarbons (being lighter than other gases in the atmosphere) rise much higher in the atmosphere. They then photodissociate to give atomic halogens. These atoms catalyze the destruction of the ozone gas. Consequences: Depletion of the ozone can practically threaten human life, and life of other animals as well. The ozone layer protects us from UV rays of the sun; without the ozone layer, everyone would be susceptible to a number of skin diseases, including skin cancer.
3. Air Pollution
Air pollution is probably one of the most dangerous effect on the environment since we cannot control the air we breathe. Vehicular traffic, smog created by the smoke emitted by vehicles and factories, volatile organic compounds, present primarily in paints and varnishes and refrigerants, all contribute to air pollution.
Consequences: Air pollution affects everything; it affects plants, animals and humans. According to WHO, poor indoor air quality can lead to respiratory infections, coronary diseases, and even lung cancer. If all this is happening indoors, imagine what is happening outside.
4. Acid Rain
Gases like carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxide, sulphur dioxide can react with water to produce corresponding acids. When this happens in the atmosphere, we get rain that is of acidic.The gases mentioned above are released into the atmosphere by certain natural processes like lightning, volcanoes, etc. However, the amount of these gases released due to factories, vehicles and different industries surpasses that produced naturally. It goes beyond a level that can be tolerated by nature. Consequences: Acid rains cause stone, rocks, steel, metal to erode and paint to peel off. This means monuments, statues, bridges, buildings, all are at a risk. It also damages the skin.
5. Urban Run-off
Urban run-off refers to the rainwater running off land and into water bodies. This is a natural process. However, with ever-increasing urbanization, this process affects water bodies adversely, because the run-off now carries all sorts of compounds, chemicals and particulate matter. Materials that cannot be gotten rid of are being added to wastewater and, ultimately, to water. Consequences: Urban run-off causes deposition of oil, gasoline,...
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