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What is Environmental protection?
Environmental protection is a practice of protecting the environment, on individual, organisational or governmental level, for the benefit of the natural environment and (or) humans.
Due to the pressures of population and technology the biophysical environment is being degraded, sometimes permanently. This has been recognised and governments began placing restraints on activities that caused environmental degradation. Since the 1960s activism by the environmental movement has created awareness of the various environmental issues. There is not a full agreement on the extent of the environmental impact of human activity and protection measures are occasionally criticized.
Academic institutions now offer courses such as environmental studies, environmental management and environmental engineering that study the history and methods of environmental protection.
Protection of the environment is needed from various human activities. Waste, pollution, loss of biodiversity, introduction of invasive species, release of genetically modified organisms and toxics are some of the issues relating to environmental protection.
There are, these days, many different agencies involved in protecting the environment.
They work in collaboration with other agencies, including:
- The Environment Agency;
- The Local Planning Authority;
- The Licensing Authority;
- The Department for Food, Environment and Rural Affairs.
The environmental movement, a term that includes the conservation and green movements, is a diverse scientific, social, and political movement for addressing environmental issues.
Environmentalists advocate the sustainable management of resources and stewardship of the environment through changes in public policy and individual behavior. In its recognition of humanity as a participant in (not enemy of) ecosystems, the movement is centered on ecology, health, and human rights.
The environmental movement is represented by a range of organizations, from the large to grassroots. Due to its large membership, varying and strong beliefs, and occasionally speculative nature, the environmental movement is not always united in its goals. At its broadest, the movement includes private citizens, professionals, religious devotees, politicians, and extremists.
Scope of the movement
Before flue gas desulfurization was installed, the air-polluting emissions from this power plant in New Mexico contained excessive amounts of sulfur dioxide.
- Environmental science is the study of the interactions among the physical, chemical and biological components of the environment.
- Ecology, or ecological science, is the scientific study of the distribution and abundance of living organisms and how these properties are affected by interactions between the organisms and their environment.
Primary focus points
- The environmental movement is broad in scope and can include any topic related to the environment, conservation, and biology, as well as preservation of landscapes, flora, and fauna for a variety of purposes and uses. See List of environmental issues.
- The Conservation movement seeks to protect natural areas for sustainable consumption, as well as traditional (hunting, fishing, trapping) and spiritual use.
Other focus points
- Environmental Conservation is the process in which one is involved in conserving the natural aspects of the environment. Whether through reforestation, recycling, or pollution control, environmental conservation sustains the natural quality of life.
- Environmental health movement dates at least to Progressive Era, and focuses on urban standards like clean water, efficient sewage handling, and stable population growth. Environmental health could also deal with nutrition, preventive medicine, aging, and other concerns specific to human well-being. Environmental health is also seen as an indicator for the state of the environment, or an early warning system for what may happen to humans.
- Environmental Justice is a movement that began in the U.S. in the 1980s and seeks an end to environmental racism and prevent low-income and minority communities from an unbalanced exposure to highways, garbage dumps, and factories. The Environmental Justice movement seeks to link "social" and "ecological" environmental concerns, while at the same time preventing de facto racism, and classism. This makes it particularly adequate for the construction of labor-environmental alliances.
- Ecology movement could involve the Gaia Theory, as well as Value of Earth and other interactions between humans, science, and responsibility.
- Deep Ecology is an ideological spinoff of the ecology movement that views the diversity and integrity of the planetary ecosystem, in and for itself, as its primary value.
- Bright green environmentalism is a currently popular sub-movement, which emphasizes the idea that through technology, good design and more thoughtful use of energy and resources, people can live responsible, sustainable lives while enjoying prosperity.
Today, the sciences of ecology and environmental science, rather than any aesthetic goals, provide the basis of unity to most serious environmentalists. As more information is gathered in scientific fields, more scientific issues like biodiversity, as opposed to mere aesthetics, are a concern. Conservation biology is rapidly-developing field. Environmentalism now has proponents in business: new ventures such as those to reuse and recycle technical equipment are becoming more and more popular. Computer liquidators are just one example.
In recent years, the environmental movement has increasingly focused on global warming as a top issue. As concerns about climate change moved more into the mainstream, from the connections drawn between global warming and Hurricane Katrina to Al Gore's film An Inconvenient Truth, many environmental groups refocused their efforts. In the United States, 2007 witnessed the largest grassroots environmental demonstration in years, Step It Up 2007, with rallies in over 1,400 communities and all 50 states for real global warming solutions.
Many religious organizations and indiidual churches now have programs and activities dedicated to environmental issues The religious movement is often supported by interpretation of scriptures. Most major religious groups are represented including Jewish, Islamic, Anglican, Orthodox, Evangelical, Christian and Catholic.
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