Wind is the natural resource that can be used to generate wind power. These 5MW wind turbines on this wind farm 28 km off the coast of Belgium

In recent years, the depletion of natural resources has become a major focus of governments and organizations such as the United Nations (UN). This is evident in the UN’s Agenda 21 Section Two which outlines the necessary steps to be taken by countries to sustain their natural resources.The depletion of natural resources is considered to be a sustainable development issue.The term sustainable development has many interpretations, most notably the Brundtland Commission’s ‘to ensure that it meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs’,however in broad terms it is balancing the needs of the planet’s people and species now and in the future.In regards to natural resources, depletion is of concern for sustainable development as it has the ability to degrade current environmentsand potential to impact the needs of future generations.
Depletion of Natural Resources is associated with social inequity. Considering most biodiversity are located in developing countries, depletion of this resource could result in losses of ecosystem services for these countries.Some view this depletion as a major source of social unrest and conflicts in developing nations.
At present, with it being the year of the forest,there is particular concern for rainforest regions which hold most of the Earth's biodiversity.According to Nelson[12] deforestation and degradation affect 8.5% of the world’s forests with 30% of the Earth’s surface already cropped. If we consider that 80% of people rely on medicines obtained from plants and ¾ of the world’s prescription medicines have ingredients taken from plants,loss of the world’s rainforests could result in a loss of finding more potential life saving medicines.
The depletion of natural resources is caused by ‘direct drivers of change’such as Mining, petroleum extraction, fishing and forestry as well as ‘indirect drivers of change’ such as demography, economy, society, politics and technology.The current practice of Agriculture is another factor causing depletion of natural resources. For example the depletion of nutrients in the soil due to excessive use of nitrogen and desertification[4] The depletion of natural resources is a continuing concern for society. This is seen in the cited quote given by Theodore Roosevelt, a well-known conservationist and former United States president, was opposed to unregulated natural resource extraction.

Creosote Health Effects

Health Effects

There is a wide ranging debate on creosote health effects these days, due to many health risks associated with it. In this article we will see what they are...

Creosote is the name used to describe a number of products which include wood creosote, coal tar creosote, etc. It is also used to describe the black oily substance which builds up inside chimney flutes, due to incomplete burning of wood or coal. Creosote is also created commercially by treating beech and other woods to high temperature or also from resin of the creosote bush. According to the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), there are many negative creosote health effects. Let's see what they are.

Creosote Health Hazards
Exposure to creosotes, coal tar, etc. can cause minor to serious health effects.
Eating food or drinking water contaminated with high level of creosote can cause burning in the mouth and throat and also lead to sharp stomach pain and stomach convulsions.
If it comes in contact with the eyes, it can cause burning sensation in the eyes. It can also cause chemical burns of the surface of the eyes.
Creosote health effects can also be caused due to consumption of herbal remedies which contain creosote bush leaves. It often can cause damage to the liver or to the kidney.
Brief contact with creosote can cause severe irritation of the skin and result in skin rashes.
Some people have also suffered from convulsions and mental confusion after they have come in contact with creosote.
Longer exposure increases creosote health risks and can cause irritation of the respiratory tract.
Kidney and liver problems have also been reported as a side effect of creosote exposure.
If a person is exposed to creosote for an extended period of time, the vapors can cause increased sensitivity to sunlight and damage to the cornea.
Some reports also indicate skin cancer and cancer of the scrotum from long exposure to low levels of creosote.
What Can Cause Creosote Exposure?
There are a number of ways a person can be exposed to creosote without really noticing that the person is indeed exposed to it.
Using skin products to treat eczema or psoriasis, which contain creosote is one of the common ways of exposure.
Consumption of dietary herbal supplements, herbal remedies made from leaves of the creosote bush is another method in which the person can be exposed to creosote.
If a person works in wood preservative, coke producing, or asphalt industries, there are chances of the person being exposed to creosote.
Exposure to creosote treated wood for building fences, bridges, railroad tracks, etc. can also result in a person coming in contact with creosote.
Living in wood houses, which are treated, can also lead to creosote contact either to the skin or through air.
A person may consume water contaminated with creosote hazardous waste, which can expose him to creosote.
To reduce the negative creosote health effects, you will have to undertake some steps. If you reside in an area where there is a wood preservation facility or gas manufacturing plant in the vicinity, then it is recommended you use long sleeved shirts and long pants, even when you are working in the garden. Ensure that children do not come in contact with creosote treated wood when they are playing near railroad tracks, in and around ditches which are closer to utility poles, old barns, etc. Avoid the usage of herbal remedies or medications which contain creosote bush. It is better to seek alternative medicines. In case a person is exposed to creosote at the workplace, then it is recommended that the person take a shower before heading home, so that the chemical is not transmitted back home through clothes, tools or other objects from the workplace. For any complication, do not waste time and visit your health care professional immediately.

Air Pollution Facts for Kids

Air Pollution Facts for Kids

Air pollution is indeed a grave and alarming issue. Here are some interesting air pollution facts for kids, which will help you explore more on the causes and the outcomes of air pollution.

We all are quite well aware about the importance of air and atmosphere around us. However, before we move to the air pollution facts for kids, let's take a detailed look at the different components and importance of air. Air is one of the major elements of our life and survival. There are many gases which comprise the air, which are 20.95% oxygen, 78.09% nitrogen, 0.039% carbon dioxide and other gases. We need oxygen to breathe, and plants need carbon dioxide to make their food by a process called photosynthesis. There are various photosynthesis facts for kids which explains the complex process of photosynthesis in much simpler terms. Now that we have learned, in brief, about the major components of air and their importance, let's see what are the air pollution facts for kids.

You must be familiar with the term air pollution. But what is air pollution? The altered level of atmospheric gases and introduction of baleful elements in the air like dust, harmful particles and other gases, industrial emissions, smoke cause air pollution. Thus, air pollution disturbs the balance of natural elements of the air and the unwanted particles or pollutants are very hazardous to human health and life on earth. Air pollution can be natural or man-made. There are a lot of factors which contribute to air pollution. Since we are talking about air pollution facts for kids, let's look into the sources and causes of air pollution.

Causes of Air Pollution
Combustion of fossil fuels causes air pollution. The three types of fossil fuels are coal, petroleum and natural gas. Fossil fuels are very essential in daily life. They are used for the production of electricity, for cooking, transportation, in industries and other purposes. The combustion of fossil fuels mainly generate a lot of carbon dioxide and water vapor. The excess level of carbon dioxide is very harmful for the environment and even the excess amount of water vapor leads to the change in atmospheric humidity.
The transportation vehicles like cars, trucks, bus, air crafts also cause air pollution. The emission of harmful gases from them, like carbon monoxide, nitrous oxide, lead and other oxides leads to the pollution of air.
The emanation of gases like sulfur dioxide and carbon monoxide from industries and factories also adds to a major cause for air pollution. Carbon monoxide is in a poisonous gas. Sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides further react with the other gases in the atmosphere which often causes acid rain.
We often have this question in mind that how does mining affect the environment. Mining indeed has a lot of adverse effects on the environment. The harmful gases and particles emitted during the mining operations, cause air pollution.
The calamitous emissions of radioactive elements also contribute to air pollution. There is a list of radioactive elements which is responsible for air pollution.
The release of harmful gases like sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides from volcanoes and other biological decays lead to air pollution. Even the discharge of other particulate matters from industries and mills causes air pollution.
Pertaining to the deforestation facts for kids, it also contributes to air pollution.
Now that we have covered some basic air pollution facts for kids, precisely the causes which lead to air pollution, we should know that air pollution doesn't only take place outside on roads and in industries, but also indoors; inside our homes. We need a healthy and conducive environment in our homes. But often due to the incomplete combustion of fuels (used for cooking and other purposes) and smoking of cigarettes, carbon monoxide is produced. Due to poor ventilation and air circulation, dust mites also lead to indoor air pollution.

Effects of Air Pollution

You can already well estimate that there is no positive effects of air pollution. When we talk about the effects of air pollution, we mean to term only its detrimental effects. Pertaining to air pollution facts for kids, let's see what are the effects of air pollution on the environment and the life on earth.
'Global warming'. Isn't a familiar term for you all? There are lot of interesting facts related to global warming for kids. But for now it is more important to know how air pollution leads to global warming than mere global warming facts for kids. We have already discussed that an excessive amount of carbon dioxide is released into the air for the combustion of fuels by cars and other appliances causing air pollution. Carbon dioxide and methane are known as the green house gases. They form a cocoon in the atmosphere, trapping and depleting back the heat. Thus, when lot of green house gases are present in the air, lot of heat is trapped leading to global warming.
There are various acid rain facts for kids which are also categorized under the air pollution facts. But for now, let's stick to the fact which explains how acid rain is related to air pollution. Harmful oxides of nitrogen and sulfur dioxide emitted from burning fossil fuels, combines and reacts with water vapor, oxygen and other gases of the atmosphere to form acid rain. Acid rain is very fatal to plant life, human life, soil, water and even buildings and monuments.
Air pollution can even lead to deadly diseases like emphysema, asthma, bronchitis, cancer, skin diseases and heart complications. The air pollution due to smoking often leads to lung cancer.
Ozone layer depletion is another major effect of air pollution. The ozone layer surrounds our atmosphere and protects us from the harmful ultraviolet rays of the sun. A gas called Chlorofluorocarbons (CFC) which is used in refrigerators, coolers, air-conditioners, leads to the depletion of ozone layer.
Thus, air pollution can indeed be termed as a silent killer. The excessive amount of air pollution is destroying our environment and making the human and plant life vulnerable to extinction. There are a lot of basic measures which we all can adapt and take to cut down the extensive amount of air pollution. Some ways to prevent air pollution can be listed down.

Ways to Prevent Air Pollution
As we all know that "Charity begins at home". The first thing we can do is, make sure to minimize the usage of fuels and electricity. That way, we can contribute not only to saving energy but always minimizing air pollution.
Make sure that our parents put the cars for servicing on time. This helps in minimizing the use of fuel consumption.
Let's "Go Green". We can plant trees wherever it's feasible to. More trees will absorb greater amount of carbon dioxide in the air.
We should try and avail more of public transports. This will help reducing the air pollution.
It is essential for us to know about the air quality for kids. For a conducive and healthy environment, we should try and lessen the use of such objects which can lead to air pollution.
If you see people indulging in such activities which can lead to air pollution, make sure to let them know about it, politely!
"There's so much pollution in the air now, that if it weren't for our lungs there'd be no place to put it all." ~ Robert Orben.

I hope you are well aware of the basic air pollution facts for kids by now. So let's Go Green and exalt our actions against air pollution right away. There are simple ways to save the environment and even minutest contributions will benefit it. Get into the spirit and take your first step towards saving the environment, won't you?

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