Mother (Nature) Knows Best

Alyssa Harclerode, Staff Writer

What images pop in your head when you hear the word, “Pollution?”  Do you picture plastic bags hanging from trees or cans and bottles on the side of the road?  Or maybe you see a bigger picture, a visual picture of a vast ocean that once thrived with life? However it now harbors off limit signs on its beaches due to toxic water and broken glass bottles hidden in the sand.  Now whether you know the exact definition of pollution or its effects, we all have heard the word at least once in our lives. You may have talked about pollution in science class, or seen headlines mentioning pollution in news articles, or even seen inspirational videos on how to prevent it on social media. It’s no secret that pollution has been in existence for a while, but for some reason we’re just now viewing pollution as a big deal.  Have you ever wondered why that is? Why are there so many articles about pollution? Why all the science class discussions?   


I’ve seen litter on the side of the road before, it’s nothing new.  Scientists say that humans started polluting our earth’s atmosphere with greenhouse gases almost 2,000 years ago, so why are we just now focusing on pollution and our role in this big issue?  I’ll tell you why. Ask your science teacher or grandparents or even your parents if they see a future for our beloved planet and see what they say. 


“Only if we as a people choose to find solutions to the ever rising issues and stop waiting for the next generation to fix what we could have prevented. We need to practice and learn to recycle, reduce, reuse” -Jessica Harclerode (a mother)


“Absolutely, there is a bright future ahead for earth.  Although we face pollution difficulties now, our physicists, scientists and environmentalists are brilliant and will find creative ways to save the earth. Small ways that we can help are to recycle, conserve water and energy, and  to develop clean, efficient energy to heat our homes and fuel our cars. We can plant trees to increase oxygen and preserve the rain forests and our ecosystem. Believe it or not, putting up a birdhouse, feeding and providing water for birds who migrate south is helpful to the planet to because birds eat insects”-Pamela Harclerode (a grandmother)


Now they may say something like they see a bright and glorious future filled with new inventions and advancements in technology, and they’re not necessarily wrong.  For humanity has advanced in ways never imagined.  We have invented the light bulb, created ways of communicating with others living continents away, built machines that have the power to do the impossible, and so much more!  But in the process the people have also destroyed our beautiful Earth. Little by little we’re taking away any hope for our future. This reason is why some people don’t see a future for Earth. 


Humans have the power to invent hovercrafts and flying cars, but what good are these things without a planet? Did you know that there are said to be 100 million different species, not including humans, that live on planet Earth?  If this is true than that means between 10,000 and 100,000 species are facing extinction each year. We were given the only planet that thrives with life. A planet that is positioned perfectly away from the sun so we don’t freeze or burn to death.  A planet that’s plants quite literally hold the cure to illness and disease. A planet that meets all basic needs for survival, everything from the rich farmland to the purity of the water was just given to us. Look what we’ve done with this gift. 


We were told the meaning of pollution and warned that if we, as a whole, kept taking our Earth for granted and kept burning fossil fuels there would be no future for Earth; and yet we ignore Mother Nature’s cries. Global warming isn’t just something that happens over night. We were warned but didn’t listen till now, for we’re witnessing the affects of our wrong doings. Earth’s polar ice caps and mountain glaciers are melting.  “Why is this a big deal?”,you may ask. Well because of the fast rate of the sea ice melting, this is resulting in the oceans absorbing and heating up the Arctic.  I know it may seem like not a big deal for someone not witnessing this tragedy, but just think of all the animals who call the Arctic home. Without the Arctic, animals like the polar bear, Arctic fox, walrus, and so many more lovable creatures of the Arctic will face extinction.  


The Arctic isn’t the only unfortunate place suffering because of our foolish mistakes. The Amazon Rainforest, also known as the “Lungs of the Planet,” is being corrupted and taken for granted.  At the hands of man, we are taking away the home that houses over 10 million species. More than 20 percent of the Amazon rain forest is already gone and much more is severely threatened due to the decision of taking an ax to a couple of trees, that turned into a couple thousand trees, and the desire for some extra cash.  We were so blinded by all the money, the inventions, the goods, to even notice what was happening right around us.   


How are you going to tell kids nursery rhymes like “Mary had a little Lamb” if there are no more lambs left?  Reindeer are a big part of Christmas. Do you really believe any child will believe in Santa or his flying reindeer if reindeer no longer exist?  Future generations are going to talk about the forest and the animals that currently dwell on this planet as if they were made up creatures in a fairy tale or as ancient history. If we do not change our ways, there will be no Amazon Rain forest, there will be no dolphins to greet you at the beach, there will be no forests to explore or igloos to be made, there will be no planet! 


You may be asking, what can I do to ensure a future for our planet and the organisms that call this place home? Well for starters, just informing your peers and community about global warming and our part in this matter goes a long way. You can also volunteer to join an organization that helps to clean our environment by getting rid of litter, planting trees, or decrease your personal use of fossil fuels. Donating to local environmental projects or fundraisers is another great way to contribute to a cleaner world and brighter future. Just remember that doing something as simple as picking up plastic or other items that are not biodegradable from the side of the road, as well as not running your car for long periods of time can go a long way. With your help, we can slowly revive our planet back to life and wipe away Mother Nature’s tears. Remember, the future is what you make it.

Courtesy of Google
Trees shaped as faces looking towards pollution and flourishment.