Global warming is in our hands

Improving the environment is difficult for one Pierce College student, but all of us collectively can make a big change. If all Pierce students eliminate one environmentally-harmful habit, it would amount to more than 21,000 changes. Scientists around the world warn of ozone depletion, environmental pollution and global warming, which affect our lives directly. Consider these facts:? The average surface temperature of our planet is likely to increase anywhere from 2 F to 11.5 F by the end of the 21st century, according to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).? Pierce College weather station’s average high temperature was 98 F in August, so the increase could raise temperatures to anywhere between 100 F and 109.5. ? Global average sea level will rise anywhere from 7.2 inches to 23.6 inches by the year 2100, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. ? If Greenland’s average temperature increases 5.6 F, then the ice sheet will start melting at a faster rate. The sea level change shows a connection between global warming and the amount of melting ice in the North and South Poles, according to National Geographic.Based on those reports, we may not be in serious trouble right now, but in the future, more people are likely to die from heat-related injuries and coastlines may change due to rising water. We may also face more natural disasters and a lot of people may lose their livelihoods – or their lives.As individuals, we should make an effort to effect small changes in our daily routines, such as turning off the lights as we leave the room. If all students at Pierce try not to waste power and they, individually, save 10 kilowatts in a month, how much power could we save? ? The cost of electricity for L.A. Department of Water and Power (DWP) customers is $0.07288 per kilowatt-hour (kWh). If one Pierce student saves 10 kWh in a month, they just saved $ 0.7288. If all students saved this way, they would have cumulatively saved $15,304. ? Half of L.A. County’s power is generated from coal, according to the DWP. Coal emits much more CO2 than natural gas or oil, which some scientists say is one of the big reasons for global warming. What else can we do?? Pierce students and employees use several tons of restroom paper towels every year. We don’t need paper towels for wiping our hands. Handkerchiefs would solve this issue.? There are also energy-efficient blow dryers in some public restrooms, which Pierce could install in order to reduce papers and trash, which would mean cutting down less trees. Some people in Japan are very interested in ecology due to the Kyoto Protocol, an effort by industrialized nations to lower CO2 emissions. Some big cities like Tokyo and Osaka tried to do good things for the environment, including “Uchimizu,” which is the activity of scattering recycled water in front of houses. The “Uchimizu” is not only effective at holding down dust, but also at cooling down the air. The theory is that scattering water takes heat away through evaporation, so the temperature drops a little. Evaporating one gram takes 0.58 kilocalories of heat away. Many people used to practice this until around 1960, but mostly senior citizens do it right now.In 2005, many people in Fukuoka, Japan, scattered one bucket of recycled water in front of their houses. The temperature went down from 86.1 F to 82.5 F in 30 minutes. This result proves that many people working together can make a difference. If more than 21,000 students including faculty would change their habits for the environment, the change would be huge. Shall we start changing from one small habit? It depends on us.