The Diversity of Life

by Edward O. Wilson

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What is the important role of humans in global environment?

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When we think of the human impact on the environment, many of us think of the problem of global climate change. Evidence has consistently shown that burning fossil fuels releases carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, and those gases increase the temperature of the earth—the land, the water, and the air. And humans burn fossil fuels. So, consider the issue of overpopulation. Overpopulation is a huge concern, and the effects are severe and far-reaching. The more people there are in the world, the more space they require for living and working. This creates a demand for more space for industry and agriculture, both of which alter the land and cause massive changes to Earth’s ecosystems.

Because human activities lead to global climate change, increased population intensifies the effects. Humans burn fossil fuels, and as the population increases, humans burn more fossil fuels. They also require more lumber and more food, which increases the problems with deforestation. Deforestation depletes natural resources, damages ecosystems, and increases carbon dioxide levels in the air. Pollution increases with overpopulation, too. Pollution has drastically reduced the quality of the air we breathe and has resulted in shortages of freshwater in many areas of the world.

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