Saturday, August 25, 2012

What environmental issues are close to your heart?

Last week, I went on a rejuvenating retreat with the folks at Upwell, a nonprofit PR firm with one client — the ocean.  One of our meeting spots was at a picnic bench by the ocean (how cool is that?), where I took these photos.

Tide Pool
Sea urchin
Bean Hollow State Beach

Now that I'm back in the city after two days in the outdoors, I've been think a lot about nature deficit disorder, and how detrimental it to us personally, as a culture (at least, in the US), that we're spending less time outside.

When reviewing the Have Fun * Do Good survey questions, I was struck by how many of you shared that you "have fun" by being spending time in nature (e.g. hiking, fishing, going to the beach, gardening, kayaking, walking). Just this morning, I read in Aging As a Spiritual Practice that one of the 8 lifestyle factors that contributes to healthy aging is being nature, so keep on doing those outdoor activities!

I'm curious.  What environmental issues are close to your heart?  I've cut and pasted the list of environmental issues from Wikipedia below. It's not meant to overwhelm you; just to provide fodder for your answers.  I'm looking forward to reading your responses in the comments (:

"Climate change — Global warming • Global dimming • Fossil fuels • Sea level rise • Greenhouse gas • Ocean acidification • Shutdown of thermohaline circulation • Environmental impact of the coal industry • Urban Heat Islands

Conservation — Species extinction • Pollinator decline • Coral bleaching • Holocene extinction • Invasive species • Poaching • Endangered species

Energy — Energy conservation • Renewable energy • Efficient energy use • Renewable energy commercialization • Environmental impact of the coal industry • Environmental impact of hydraulic fracturing

Environmental degradation — Eutrophication • Habitat destruction • Invasive species

Environmental health — Air quality • Asthma • Environmental impact of the coal industry • Electromagnetic fields • Electromagnetic radiation and health • Indoor air quality • Lead poisoning • Sick Building Syndrome • Environmental impact of hydraulic fracturing

Genetic engineering — Genetic pollution • Genetically modified food controversies

Intensive farming — Overgrazing • Irrigation • Monoculture • Environmental effects of meat production • Slash and burn • Pesticide drift • Plasticulture

Land degradation — Land pollution • Desertification

Soil — Soil conservation • Soil erosion • Soil contamination • Soil salination

Land use — Urban sprawl • Habitat fragmentation • Habitat destruction

Nanotechnology — Nanotoxicology • Nanopollution

Nuclear issues — Nuclear fallout • Nuclear meltdown • Nuclear power • Nuclear weapons • Nuclear and radiation accidents • Nuclear safety • High-level radioactive waste management

Overpopulation — Burial • Water crisis • Overpopulation in companion animals • Tragedy of the commons • Gender Imbalance in Developing Countries • Sub-replacement fertility levels in developed countries

Ozone depletion — CFC • Biological effects of UV exposure

Pollution — Environmental impact of the coal industry • Nonpoint source pollution • Point source pollution • Light pollution • Noise pollution • Visual pollution

Water pollution — Environmental impact of the coal industry • Acid rain • Eutrophication • Marine pollution • Ocean dumping • Oil spills • Thermal pollution • Urban runoff • Water crisis • Marine debris • Microplastics • Ocean acidification • Ship pollution • Wastewater • Fish kill • Algal bloom • Mercury in fish • Environmental impact of hydraulic fracturing

Air pollution — Environmental impact of the coal industry • Smog • Tropospheric ozone • Indoor air quality • Volatile organic compound • Atmospheric particulate matter• Environmental impact of hydraulic fracturing

Reservoirs — Environmental impacts of reservoirs

Resource depletion — Exploitation of natural resources • Overdrafting 
  • Consumerism — Consumer capitalism • Planned obsolescence • Over-consumption
  • Fishing — Blast fishing • Bottom trawling • Cyanide fishing • Ghost nets • Illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing • Overfishing • Shark finning • Whaling
  • Logging — Clearcutting • Deforestation • Illegal logging
  • Mining — Acid mine drainage • Environmental impact of hydraulic fracturing • Mountaintop removal mining • Slurry impoundments
Toxins — Chlorofluorocarbons • DDT • Endocrine disruptors • Dioxin • Toxic heavy metals • Environmental impact of the coal industry • Herbicides • Pesticides • Toxic waste • PCB • Bioaccumulation • Biomagnification• Environmental impact of hydraulic fracturing

Waste — Electronic waste • Litter • Waste disposal incidents • Marine debris • Medical waste • Landfill • Leachate • Environmental impact of the coal industry • Incineration • Great Pacific Garbage Patch • Exporting of hazardous waste• Environmental impact of hydraulic fracturing"

Full disclosure: The link to Aging as a Spiritual is attached to my Amazon Associates account. If you purchase something after clicking on the link, I get a small percentage of the sale, which I'll most likely spend on more books!

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