ADVOCACY DISSERTATION DOCUMENT
GLOBAL ENVIRONMENTAL PROBLEMS & THE EDUCATIONAL OPTION:
By Richard Banz
photo credit Mariusz Prusaczyk
Global environmental problems are one of the fundamental issues to be addressed because of their impact on the quality of life throughout the planet. However, the study programs of the subjects do not allow, in general, a broad treatment of these contents that, by their nature, correspond to different areas of knowledge.
One of the possible ways to be used in educational processes to study global environmental problems is the use of multimedia interactive application products that complement what is addressed within the study programs.
The importance of knowing the global environmental problems and their contextualization at a regional and national level is highlighted. The magnitude of global environmental problems is evident, an issue that still indicates today the importance of its treatment from Environmental Education.
During the past generation, the environment has changed more rapidly than at any other comparable time in history. Although natural phenomena have played their part in this change, the primary source of this dynamic has been accelerated by human interaction with the biosphere. Those influences, produced inadvertently or on purpose, have created or will create dramatic global changes that can alter human existence for many years.
The biosphere is a system that encompasses all living beings on our planet as well as the air, water, and soil that constitute their habitat or place where their life cycle normally develops. For the maintenance of this life cycle it is essential that the ecological balance is not altered, which implies the need to avoid actions that may modify it in some way or may introduce changes in any of the agents involved in it, of which, the air, water, and soil are, without a doubt, of vital importance.
To clarify the above, contamination means any undesirable change in the characteristics of air, water or soil, which negatively affects all living beings on the planet. These changes are generated mainly by the action of the human being.
In the atmosphere, the increase in the concentration of carbon dioxide, CO 2, can alter the temperature of the Earth because this compound is transparent to the solar radiation received from the Sun, allowing it to pass freely, but absorbs, nevertheless, the infrared radiation emitted from the earth. The total effect of this phenomenon is that the higher the concentration of CO 2 in the atmosphere, the greater the amount of energy received by the Earth from the Sun that is "trapped" in the atmosphere in the form of heat. This phenomenon is known as the "greenhouse effect" would cause an overheating of the atmosphere and modify, among others, the rainfall regime, which would produce alterations on the arable land and the extension of the deserts.
The presence in the stratosphere of certain compounds, especially chlorofluorocarbons, man-made chemicals, can cause a decrease in the concentration of ozone in the stratosphere, which is an essential atmospheric filter to contain ultraviolet radiation. A sensitive decrease in this protective layer would have detrimental effects on human health and the biosphere.
Half of the population of the TieIt lives on almost 5% of the non-maritime surface of the planet, and largely sits around coastal regions, such as estuaries and river mouths. The biodiversity of rivers, lakes, torrents, and wetlands is the most threatened set of ecosystems on Earth. Almost 20% of freshwater fish have disappeared or are in danger of doing so. But it's not just the fish. Amphibians, mollusks and many other species are also endangered, although the biodiversity of freshwater is not sufficiently known. Human beings are concentrated in the vicinity of watercourses and cause freshwater systems to be the first habitat to degrade.
They use water, consume their animal species, use their channels to move and as collectors of their discharges. It is necessary to express that fresh drinking water accounts for only 0.008% of terrestrial water, which sometimes makes its use pose complex problems. In urban areas of the third world, 170 million people lack clean water to meet their minimum needs: drinking, cooking or washing; In the rural areas of these countries, the picture is bleaker, reaching almost 885 million.
Some experts believe that water scarcity could be one of the main causes of wars between countries in the future, especially in the aridest areas. Only by using it in an adequate and equitable way could the catastrophic effects of this situation be prevented. Pollution of the marine ecosystem has reached enormous proportions because men consider it the natural recipient of a whole series of wastes, of which approximately 90% remain in the so-called coastal waters. These waters concentrate most of the activities of maritime traffic, of extraction of fishing and mineral resources, of recreational activities, of discharges and elimination of waste, of conservation of the environment and defense of the coast and of urbanization of the coast.
The diagnosis of scientists are almost unanimous: the degradation of soils as a result of the activity of the human being is constantly accentuated. Soils are live and fragile environments, in which intense biological and physicochemical exchanges are carried out.
They degrade when erosion drags materials into rivers or the ocean at a faster rate than their natural reconstitution. They are exhausted when their properties do not have the possibility to regenerate naturally or thanks to external contributions. The cities, for long periods of time, outstanding centers of production, social development, innovation, and creativity, have recently become increasingly inhospitable spaces in that poverty, violence, marginalization, and degradation of the environment multiply. The disproportionate urban boom of these last decades, as fast as unbalanced, has unleashed an unprecedented environmental crisis with worrying effects also on health. According to the United Nations, the deterioration of the urban environment is responsible for more than 600 million inhabitants of cities around the world, mainly in developing countries, living in conditions that seriously threaten their health and survival, and another 1300 million are exposed daily to levels of air pollution that exceed the recommendations of the World Health Organization.
Agricultural practices, the cutting of forests, the production and use of energy, the increase of population and other activities of human beings in relation to the environment have altered terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems as well as the Earth's own atmosphere. These alterations include, according to those previously expressed, among others, global warming, the reduction of the ozone layer, the loss of biodiversity, air pollution and the quality of life of millions of human beings. All these fundamental environmental changes transcend the boundaries of nations and, therefore, must be seen from a global perspective.
"We need to take and be proud of passing a safe and clean world for our children and the children of our children... " With the use given to the Didactic Exhibition where they are included, other contents, causes and consequences of the Global Environmental Problems, so called because they affect the entire planet, and its regional and national contextualization, each of us in our teaching practice will walk In search of a sustainable future, contributing in this way to the environmental educational objective pursued by this exhibition.
Development The Virtual Didactic Exhibition GLOBAL ENVIRONMENTAL PROBLEMS is divided into three major sections: GLOBAL ENVIRONMENTAL PROBLEMS, with the following contents: Global climate change, Destruction of the ozone layerDisadvantage of biodiversity, Ocean pollutionSnack and misuse of the Water Loss and degradation of agricultural and forestry soils, Deserificación, Lack of housing and basic sanitation REGIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL PROBLEMS. Focused on the area of Latin America and the Caribbean.
NATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL PROBLEMS. It shows the environmental situation in Cuba. Defining the content to be included in the didactic exhibition was not as difficult as deciding how to use it in educational processes. Taking into account its possible use in different levels of education, including postgraduate education, its application must be adapted to the purpose to be pursued: as a teaching medium or as a means of learning, since its conception thus allows it.
Final considerations The use of Didactic Exhibition GLOBAL ENVIRONMENTAL PROBLEMS allows the incorporation of Environmental Education to the teaching practice in different levels of education with the interdisciplinary approach that this discipline of study requires. The teaching activities carried out within the framework of this exhibition should encourage students to understand the genesis of environmental problems and their consequences, something of great value in the process of their training and professional training in environmental issues. The didactic exhibition contributes positively to the formation of environmental values in undergraduate and graduate students, since in its cont The emphasis is on the consequences that human activities have on the degradation of the environment, promoting a responsible attitude towards these problems.