What is Environmental Awareness?
To define environmental awareness we must first understand the environmentalist movement. Environmentalism is an ideology that evokes the necessity and responsibility of humans to respect, protect, and preserve the natural world from its anthropogenic (caused by humans) afflictions.
Environmental awareness is an integral part of the movement’s success. By teaching our friends and family that the physical environment is fragile and indispensable we can begin fixing the problems that threaten it.
Numerous resources are available to promote environmental awareness; group learning (in or outside of class), informational and inspirational seminars, such as our Awakening the Dreamer Program, and environmental books and brochures are just a few of the tools that can get you involved in promoting the environment.
How to Promote Environmental Awareness
When learning about the environment’s declining health it is easy to feel discouraged, but what keeps us fighting for a healthy world is the future of our children. They should not have to inherit our environmental problems and in order to keep their future bright, spreading awareness is imperative.
Before you can begin promoting environmental awareness in your own community you must first make sure that you have a thorough understanding of environmental issues. Staying up to date on environmental news and reading comprehensive books about environmental threats are both great resources, but if you’re the type of person who prefers a more interactive approach, attending environmental seminars is a great option.
Our Awakening the Dreamer Symposium is an inspirational and informative seminar that discusses man-made environmental issues, while also instilling a sense of hopefulness for the future.
Join the 1000s and Kickstart Your Environmental Awareness Campaign with The Awakening The Dreamer Symposium.
A 4-minute introduction to the experience that will transform your relationship to the crisis and opportunity of this time in history.
Our Awakening the Dreamer Symposium, created by The Pachamama Alliance organization, is an invaluable resource to help you become environmentally aware. Specifically, the symposium demonstrates that environmental destruction is the result of a flaw in the modern world’s belief system, in which our actions lack consequences. Meanwhile, our partnerns in the Amazon forest, the Achuar, (along with the rest of the world) are experiencing our consequences daily with the continued threat of big oil destroying their home. In order to keep their rainforest pristine we need to stop our dependence on fossil fuel and begin using environmentally sustainable resources.
The symposium makes a powerful point that the environment is in critical condition and while there is still hope to change our course, time is of the essence. During the symposium a desire and urgency to become an environmental steward is inspired; the symposium appropriately calls this desire as being in a state of “blessed unrest”.
Once the participant has awakened into this state of “blessed unrest”, they are supplied with courses of action and resources to begin promoting environmental awareness in their community.
Make a Difference
After you have become environmentally aware you can begin teaching those around you. The symposium acts a catalyst for you to begin your role as an environmental steward and provides online courses and other resources to keep you on track.
A good course of action that ensures your continued participation as a global citizen is to pick an environmental issue that strikes you as most urgent. The amount of environmental issue seems limitless and while they are all important it is best to initially focus on one cause. You will soon see that all environmental issues are intertwined and will find your niche of interest.
After your decision is made you then explain its importance and urgency to your community, friends, and family, create beneficial communal projects, and find more causes to become apart of.
Examples of Environmental Issues That Need Fixing
Here are several cause-and-effect problems that harm our environment:
- Oil Drilling- This issue is one that causes a great deal of environmental destruction. Our dependence on fossil fuel is a global addiction that affects every aspect of the world. Oil spills and offshore drilling poison marine life, oil drilling (on land) suffocates the earth, and the combustion of fossil fuels add to the increased atmospheric CO₂, which in turns causes the progression of global warming and ocean acidification. This is a multifaceted issue and is a good cause to get involved with because it covers such a broad spectrum of issues.
- Deforestation- Millions of acres of forest are cut down for industrial benefit, such as large scale farming, oil mining, and the production of paper goods. Deforestation causes wildlife and biodiversity extinction. The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has a Red List of environmentally threatened species with up-to-date information. Oftentimes, the cause for their threatened existence is listed as loss of habitat as it is for many Amazonian species.
- Production of Plastic Goods- Currently our society creates a great deal of waste and much of that waste is comprised of plastic. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in 2010 alone 31 million tons of plastic waste was created. This waste ends up all over the globe in both land and water, a good example is the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. Not only is plastic waste an issue, but the production of plastic is also dependent on fossil fuel combustion. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) in 2010 191 million barrels of liquid petroleum gases(LPG) and natural gas liquids (NGL) were used in the U.S. alone to produce plastic goods.
Possible Project Ideas
Once you’re well versed in environmental issues, use that knowledge to create beneficial project in your home and in your community.
- Instead of driving to work or school, take the bus, carpool, walk, or ride your bike to cut down on greenhouse gas emissions. According to the EPA transportation adds to 33% of the total atmospheric CO₂.
- Consider investing in appropriate technology like clean power (solar or wind), if not for your home maybe for a community center. This will also help wean ourselves off fossil fuels.
- Buy reusable products such as glass bottles, reusable bags and cups etc. Avoid buying paper towels, plastic bottles and bags.
- Start composting and recycling, which will help cut down our waste production.
- Support local businesses and farmers by only buying organic food at farmers markets. Make sure the food is pesticide free. This will help your community become self-reliant.
Share Your Knowledge
Once you have chosen your cause and figured out some beneficial activities, share it with the world! Get your community, friends, and family involved. Use your political voice in your local city council and propose environmentally sustainable and beneficial projects. Start a community garden, buy from local stores and farmers markets, make your public transportation more efficient and/or start implementing clean energy strategies in your community centers.
It is more than likely that your children are learning about environmentalism in school, but it does not have to be limited to school grounds. Children learn a great deal at home and by using green practices you will be providing them with a strong foundation for environmental stewardship.
We also have a youth-centered environmental awareness seminar called, Generation Waking Up, which uses interactive learning methods to inspire the minds of the participants to become global citizens.
Promoting environmental awareness is a crucial part of being an environmental steward. Start participating in the change and teach your community what it means to be sustainable.