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Environmental crisis is a problem that has been caused by a number of factors. These factors range from political to social; they have been hindering efforts and campaigns of various environmental crisis management groups. In this case, environmental crisis can be regarded as a problem that people have caused themselves. Global warming is a problem that has been caused by the damage to the ozone layer. Human activity is one of the main factors that contribute to the damage to the ozone layer. For a long time, efforts to rectify the damage have been made in vain, and the groups that have been trying to find a solution to the problem have faced various challenges. In the medical field, a disease or a medical condition that does not heal can be referred to as chronic or terminal. In this case, the environmental problems caused by human activity have turned into a chronic disease, although numerous efforts have been made to “cure” it. However, in this case, the variables and efforts that are required to make a difference in addressing the environmental issues have not born fruit and have therefore resulted in a crisis (Carlson 96).
Environmental crisis is not the damage that has been caused to the environment, but it is the instability in the economic and social spheres that has caused groups and governments to take desperate measures. A crisis can be described as a situation that requires an immediate solution or addressing, and whose effects continue to prevail because of delayed reforms. With the purpose of putting an end to the problem of the global warming, numerous campaigns have been launched to encourage people to take part in environmentally beneficial activities. While the efforts and campaigns are necessary, social, political and economic problems do not contribute to achieving positive results.
Education is the backbone of any nation and society, and it plays an important role in propagating change and development. The level of education that people attain differs from one social group to another. In the USA, there is a need for educational reforms, as most people do not attain a necessary level of education in the sphere of environment. Although the majority of people are regarded as educated, very few of them are willing to participate in campaigns and initiatives that promote prevention of damaging activities to the environment and environment conservation. Also, quite often educated people choose careers in urban settings and leave the countryside to not sufficiently educated people. The lack of education of people in the countryside and the rural-urban movement of the educated exposes the environment to a number of issues. Educated people major in various disciplines like medical fields, law, and theology; disciplines that have nothing to do with environment. Whether society learns or attains quality education, environmental issues make up a different discipline and require special education (Goldin 47).
The amount that an individual earns places that particular individual in a specific social class. The social class of any person can be categorized into three major groups: the wealthy, middle class, and the poor. The social class of the poor is referred to as poverty, and it is likely not only to hinder efforts of fighting environmental crisis, but it is also capable of furthering and aggravating the existing problems. Poverty in this case happens to be a social obstacle that hinders the efforts of various groups and initiatives determined to address environmental issues. Poverty is a social status that forces people to adapt to cheap and uneconomical resources. In theory and practice, poverty leads to a wasteful use of resources. Energy is one of the resources that have been used wastefully by the group of individuals regarded as poor (Colwell 119).
“I will push for reforms that address the environmental issues and promote alternative energy sources that do not pollute the environment.” Politicians and the political settings they operate in do not consider people’s complaints seriously. The opening remark to this sub-topic is a popular campaign line that has been used repeatedly for the last 50 years of presidential and congress elections. Politicians are greedy watchdogs whose purpose has not been any better than exploiting environmental and human resources. As watchdogs, they are aware of the environmental problems that people are eager to solve. As a greedy lot, politicians have refined their communication skills to lure people into voting for them. After politicians are elected to the congress or the White House, the issues that they promised to address become of a lesser priority. Politicians always have their vested interests, and once they are elected, they start to ignore the problem of the environmental crisis and pursue only their interests. Politicians have enough power and resources to deal with environmental issues. However, they are too focused on their own problems and do nothing to resolve the environmental crisis..
When government authorities are elected by people, they are expected to deal with environmental and many other issues. However, ordinary people can also take part in this process. It is through mobilization of people that society can overcome challenges of the environmental crisis. Since all politicians always keep promising to address the most burning social problems, it is very difficult for people to choose the right authorities that will keep their promises after being elected. This status of indecisiveness leads to a disoriented community whose choice in political leaders shifts from one candidate to another, hence, dragging the resolution of environmental issues. Politicians enter congress by promising voters a number of reforms to get them to their side. In order to win in an election, these politicians embark on political wars, whereby, a politician with the most practical approach to solving problems is considered a loser. Those politicians who tend to make impractical promises as a rule do not have the means of achieving them (Dovie 24).
The economy of any nation is attributed to the means and amount of GDP generated. The economy of a nation defines the kind and type of activities that should be addressed first. For example, Africa is one of the poorest continents in the world; therefore, environment watch is not one of the priorities of the governments operating in Africa. In this case, Africa would misuse the available resources in order to improve its economy. In Asia, particularly China, environment watch is also not a prioritized task, as plenty of other issues need addressing first. China is a growing nation in terms of economic development through the integration of top-class technology and a high level of innovation. Over the last decade, China has been termed as a growing economy. However, the ability of China to penetrate international markets is a reason that can be considered to classify China as a developed nation, but the exchange rate of the Yuan against the dollar and other big economies has been low. It therefore means that China thrives to make its presence felt in international markets as a world power. The quest for financial stability and desire to have a bigger market has pushed China to prioritize industrialization rather than environmental conservation or protection. Once the highly prioritized duties have been dealt with, the issue of environment can follow (Faber 392).
Environmental crisis management is a task that requires funding in order to facilitate integration of duty and purpose. There are issues that hinder organizations from promoting environmental conservation and funding of environmental initiatives. Lack of funding is another economic obstacle that has dragged the implementation of environment conservation policies. At the same time, funders are usually politically-motivated and instead of funding activities that would address environmental issues, they fund politicians to see them in office. Carbon emission is an undertaking that is highly associated with industries and automobiles. It therefore follows that industries associated with polluting the environment fund politicians, hence buying the leaders’ lenience on environmental policies.
Dealing with the Social Obstacles
The social obstacles that have been identified above include lack of environment education and poverty. In addressing the issue of environmental crisis, the issues mentioned above have to be addressed first; otherwise, there would be imbalanced development. When it comes to the issue of addressing educational matters, it seems that lack of basic education is the cause of problems. Currently, basic education is a right to everyone almost everywhere across the globe. It is therefore irrelevant to assume that lack of basic education is an obstacle that has been contributing to the problem of environmental crisis. Students and even working class have been associating education with the idea that it will help to implement their career dreams as well as diversify their chances of getting quality and well-paid jobs. However, the responsibility of taking care of the environment is a collective responsibility, which requires workers and scholars to participate actively. In this case, one way to address the problem is by educating people on the important role that the environment plays in their lives. To do so, a mandatory course for all universities and colleges should be created to educate people on the importance of preserving their environment.
Education is highly associated with career choices and furthering of general knowledge. However, education is not supposed to be a tool for maneuvering around the corporate world with high qualifications. On the contrary, it is supposed to be a protective tool or a problem-solving tool. In this case, people who cannot afford quality education or are unable to access higher education initiatives can be provided with more information on the issues of environment. The government can create policies that manage the environment. However, unless people are educated on the issues that matter, the policy proposal and implementation would be a waste of time and resources. Therefore, as a solution, the government or campaign groups should update people on the importance of environmental conservation and protection. For example, if replacing lost vegetation was a way that environmental crisis could be overcome, then people should be informed about it and get involved in this process. However, as much as one group can do the work, other people are likely to involve themselves in activities contrary to those of the other group.
Dealing with the Political Obstacles
Politicians are leaders who should yield improvement in various sectors that affect their areas of representation. If a state, a district, or a county faces any form of crisis, the politicians that represent that area of governance are responsible for involving people and other forms of government into solving the problems. As a congressional or a governmental move, policies that create government watchdogs to assess the performance of politicians do not work. During campaigns, politicians come up with all types of excuses and promises to lure voters into voting for them. Voters choose candidates who they consider to rightfully address their concerns. However, after these candidates are elected, their focus shifts from social interests to their own ones. This tendency has been witnessed in Africa and most oil producing countries. As a remedy, a body should be created that keeps track of politicians’ promises and campaign tactics. Once this body is functional, a politician would be expected to establish and outline means upon which they would attain the objectives and goals that they promised to attain before being elected. At the same time, politicians would be monitored on how they manage to deal with current and pressing issues. With the correct appraisals, leaders or politicians who do not perform their duties in accordance to the interests of the majority of people would be apprehended for abuse of office.
Environmental crisis is a problem that can be managed through collective efforts. The government is not expected to pull off any miraculous undertakings and curb the problem entirely without breaking a sweat. It is, therefore, ensured through a monitory strategy that politicians are committed to the duties of their office. The US government is a member of the Geneva Convention among other governments; however, the US does not outline or mention the proceedings of its environmental crisis management. As long as there is a treaty signed between the US and other nations, an authoritative body should be established to ensure that the requirements of the conventions are not only met, but also enforced. Whether the body is internal or external, the results and importance of the body should entirely focus on addressing matters that relate and are relevant to environmental conservation.
Dealing with the Economic Obstacles
Taking Africa as an example, the environmental challenges that are present on the continent, other than food crisis, are not as pressing as economic issues. For an African, the purpose of natural resources is to provide basic needs; houses are built from bricks and mud, timber, and have thatched roofs. The fuel is charcoal, coal, and firewood – a combination that is likely to have a significantly damaging effect on the environment. Taking China on the other hand, too much is at stake in terms of environmental pollution, but the priority is given to the economic sector. As Africans use their natural resources to feed and house themselves, the Chinese on the other hand, destroy the environment with industrialization that does not even depend on natural resources. The priorities that various groups and governments have in terms of economy are applied as determinants of the economic status and objective of that particular entity or government. To address this, the amount of carbon dioxide released annually by any particular nation should be measured, and the corresponding governments should be fined. The African government should aim to provide mandatory basic education (that at least provides some college certification), as lack of education is one of the causes of economic inability.
Foundations have been established all across the US to address the environmental crises; some of these foundations are established by politicians and affiliate parties. Organizations and individuals with a great deal of wealth donate money to charity groups that promote environmental conservation. Some of the organizations establish foundations that are aimed at promoting and sensitizing the masses to the importance of environmental conservation. However, it is hard to assess the motives of these foundations, as some of them sponsor some environmentally-friendly activities, while the organizations behind their founding are about to release new products into the market. Politicians are also sponsored by some of these organizations to ascent to power. This move is aimed at primarily corrupting a politician and promoting lenience to environmental hazards posed by the sponsoring organizations. In order to address the economic issues that surround funding of environmental campaigns, a mechanism should be provided to isolate political ambitions from conservational sponsors. Social and environmental aspects that are affected by the environmental crisis should be addressed out of the political context, and funding should be cleared of any political motives.
Reason for Choosing the Strategies Described above
The reason for choosing the monitory model, educational packages, and isolation of political ambitions from social and environmental funding is to shift the focus on environmental crisis management. Given that issues related to the environmental damage affect every individual, it is the duty of authorities and political groups to offer education packages that would educate people on the importance of taking care of their environment. On the other hand, governments and politicians should encourage people to take action in preserving their national heritage through leadership and cooperation. Funders of environmentally-related initiatives should channel their contributions through independent and non-governmental authorities in order to isolate people’s interests from political dirty practices.