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To me, the best thing that individual people can do to save the world is to reduce their consumption of energy. Since it is our use of hydrocarbons that is putting us in danger, we need to reduce that.
- Buy cars that get better gas mileage.
- Not drive so much
- Not take trips (like on airplanes) that aren't necessary, or at least don't so it so often
- Not eat so much meat because meat takes way more resources per pound than vegetables do.
- Conserve electricity as much as possible -- don't be careless about leaving lights on, etc.
This is a huge question and a noble one as well. I am sure that you will get a lot of answers, but I think that there are two things that are essential. First, we need to bring awareness to every person. If the people are not behind it, things will become difficult. We need to show people that it is a problem for all of us. Second, we need to spread information about what things people can do, such as conserve, recycle and support green technology. I suggest that we implement classes in grammar school.
I think that action needs to be taken on as many levels as possible. On the individual and localized level, individuals have to acknowledge that daily practices to "go green" can be adopted and integrated into patterns of existences. State and local agencies have to encourage this process in both legislation and action. It is a disconnect to have citizens shoulder the load of responsibility, but public agencies do not receive any reprimand when they conduct business with or engage in environmentally unsound practices. On a federal level, government has to ensure that a part of its national agenda includes environmental protection and awareness in a variety and significant ways. At the same time, it must also interact with other nations to ensure that the goal of ecological balance is something that is shared amongst nations. On all levels, there has to be a communicated and active role towards protecting the environment.
I believe the question relates to saving world from the bad effects of environmental pollution. Unfortunately there are no easy and simple way of doing this. The extent of pollution created by humans is quite closely related to the increasing levels of prosperity and consumption.
Measures such as using less polluting cars and reducing the amount of driving we do, eat more vegetables instead of meat, shift to higher use of products and packaging made of biodegradable material and in general reducing wastage of energy and other resources, will reduce a small portion - for example, say one tenth - of the total pollution created for a given level of pollution. However much greater problem is the controlling the increase in pollution due to increase in general level of prosperity of mankind. Control of increase in pollution due to this is much more important.
In a world which has today a very small proportion of the total world accounting for total world production and consumption of economic wealth as well as creation of environmental pollution, it is impractical, and unethical to try and stop people from poorer regions of the world from improving their economic situation as a means of controlling pollution. A better approach will be for the developed countries to pool in their technological expertise to help developing countries to achieve economic development with minimum additional pollution. Unfortunately this aspect of environmental pollution control has been very much neglected so far.
This is a very good question. The first thing to do would be to educate yourself. Find out ways to conserve energy, recycle, cut back on pollution, etc. and share what you have learned with others. One person alone cannot "save the world" but with the effort of many it is very possible to make the world a better place.
A good place to start is with automobiles. It's a reality that in the future fossil fuels will run out. There are already options out there, such as hybrid cars, that help with the environment. Simple things such as carpooling can also help a great deal.
Energy is also very important. For example, many local communities are using wind energy to help the environment. Turning off lights at home can also help a great deal.
Recycling is also very important. Instead of buying cases of bottled water, people could use the same water bottle and refill it.
The fact of the matter is that this is a global issue. The best place is to start with yourself and share your beliefs and findings with others.
I would agree with the above posters in that it has to start with each individual doing their part. I also think that making others around us aware of the importance of doing things that are more "green" is important. In our small community the city stopped it's recycling program several years ago, in the past year through the efforts of a few individuals in the community it is implementing limited recycling again. Individuals can make a difference.
This makes me think of the Michael Jackson song, "Man in the Mirror"--I'm starting with the man in the mirror. I'm asking him to change his ways. The best place to start is with ourselves as individuals and lead by example. Cut back on energy waste. Walk to work, or carpool if walking is not feasible. Buy recycled or recyclable whenever possible. Cut back on conspicuous consumption of fuel, food, material items, and etc. Start grassroots campaigns in our communities to bring focus to the issues.
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