In our world today, firm evidences are very much needed to support claims and produce a sturdy foundation of concepts that were recently discovered by few a portion of the population. In connection to this, the role that scientists play in the discovery and confirmation of certain events is very crucial especially in terms of environmental issues because they are deemed to be the people who are knowledgeable of the technicalities and dimensions of the natural phenomena (Gott et al. , 2009).
In dealing with these types of issues, it is believed that the knowledge and expertise of the scientists, researchers, and other experts must be put into consideration prior to the development of environmental policies (Gott et al. , 2009). This is based on the idea that the availability of concrete scientific evidence will enhance the integrity of the policy that is to be formed and will also save the stakeholders from investing time and monetary provisions to policies and actions that are not hinged on well-researched and scientifically backed up data (Gott et al.
, 2009). Consequently, the importance of a having scientific evidence prior to the formation of environmental actions is essential in ensuring that all the possible pitfalls and counteractions for the study are provided. B. Is it better to prepare for the consequences of global warming rather than try to prevent it?
As seen from the slide presentations of chapter 9, it is clearly depicted from this reference material that it is more important to prevent the occurrence of global warming rather than trying to rely on the idea that preparation for the consequences of this natural phenomenon is a better option (It is one planet, n. d). Although it is true that the occurrence of global warming is a natural phenomenon that will proceed on its own conditions, man should still do his or her best to accomplish ways that can lessen the speed of the reactions and minimize the possible amount of the detrimental effects on our mother Earth.
At present, actions made by national leaders like Al Gore and government leaders of other developed countries will tell us that addressing the roots of the problem on global warming is still a better option than just sitting down and waiting for the effects to come and hoping that the pre-formed actions will suffice the need to prevent subsequent damages (It is one planet, n. d).
People all over the world can lessen the utilization of carbon-based products, reduce the usage of technologies that emit substantial amount of pollution to our surroundings, and exhibit a global effort to lessen the consumption of materials that tend to damage the quality of the natural resources that are made available to us by nature in order to prevent the worsening conditions of global warming (It is one planet, n. d). C. Can you imagine a world without oil? Does it matter?
In 1950s, a geologist named Marion King Hubbert predicted the bell-shaped trend on the production and consumption of oil products in the United States of America and by comparing his predictions to the present conditions, it will appear that he is right (Goodstein, 2004). According to Hubbert, oil production or oil supply in the USA will start to reduce by 1970 (Goodstein, 2004). Here also said that the worldwide supply of oil will also start to reduce by the year 2000 (Goodstein, 2004).
In accordance to this, present data show that humans are using oil products at rate of about 25 billion barrels per year and by merging this data to the predictions of Hubbert and other experts, it can be said that we have about 40 more years to enjoy the benefits of oil (Goodstein, 2004). Based from these facts, it can be said that a world without oil is not far from reality and is actually about to happen in the near future (Goodstein, 2004).
Hence, people should act now on the development of alternative energy sources in order to avoid pandemonium that is caused by the lack of material that will power our modern equipments (Goodstein, 2004). D. Are environmental issues an opportunity or a constraint for corporations? Corporations can look at environmental issues both as constraints and as opportunities depending on the way by which they handle the situation (Shah, 2002).
In a report published in 2002 by the United Nations Environment Program, they said that there is an increasing disparity between efforts to save the planet and business projects (Shah, 2002). One specific example on the manner by which corporations utilized environmental issues as an opportunity is seen on the exploitation and harassment of the Nigerian people in order to push through with the oil extraction process in the said country (Shah, 2002).
This event clearly shows the abusive power that can be manipulated by large corporations (Shah, 2002). In contrary to this, however, are the efforts made by the GE Company to develop green business, a venture that has enabled them to produce eco-friendly products (GE Company, 2010). Therefore, it lies in the hands of the owners of these big corporations on whether they will use their power to benefit or to harm the Mother Nature. E. Should the decisions at global conferences be made enforceable? By whom?
Ultimate enforcement of decisions made on global conferences can only be done if majority of the participating nations have agreed on the idea that was raised and when a global pressing issue is the concern of the conference (UN, 2009). Consequently, it is the United Nations which is allowed to execute enforcement of these types of decisions and this is because of the fact that this organization is joined by majority of the nations in the world and is also authorized to carry out stipulations and solutions to issues on health, environment, and social concerns (UN, 2009).
F. How does bring about a change in life styles in order to live sustainability? In order to switch to a sustainable way of living, a series of simple to complex efforts can be done by a person and these efforts are characterized by the alteration of the way by which one deals with his or her environment, changing the daily activities and avoiding bad habits, and overall promotion of responsibility to the things that are executed by the person (Ways of Wisdom, 2002).
Specific steps that can be done in order to have a sustainable lifestyle include the promotion of resourcefulness, healthy physical work, and self reliance; not focusing on the short-term effects of monetary rewards but on the long-term plans, tapping natural resources in a positive way like backyard gardening and tree planting, stewardship for the environment, and valuing the importance of time and resources in order to avoid waste of time and efforts on non-important things (Ways of Wisdom, 2002).
References General Electric Company. (2010). Ecomagination. Retrieved 06 May 2010, from http://www. ge. ecomagination. com Goodstein, D. (2004). The end of the age of oil. California Institute of Technology, 38 (2). Gott, R. , Duggan, S. , Roberts, R. & Hussain, A. (2009). Research into understanding scientific evidence. Retrieved 06 May 2010, from http://www. dur. ac. uk It is one planet. (n. d). Chapter 9. Shah, A. (2002).
Corporations and the environment. Global Issues. Retrieved 06 May 2010, from http://www. globalissues. org United Nations. (2009). United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs. Division for Sustainable Development. Retrieved 06 May 2010, from http://www. un. org Ways of Wisdom. (2002). Ten characteristics of a sustainable lifestyle. Ways of Wisdom. Retrieved 06 may 2010, from http://www. waysofwisdom. com