Environmental Environment Essay
According to the United Nations, North America is the most urban country in the world, with “…82 per cent [of Americans] living in urban areas in 2014,” the highest it has ever been. It is a well-known fact that cities are the main source of greenhouse gases, such as car exhaust, and with the new push to live in cities, these gases are continually disintegrating the ozone layer. However, the destruction of the ozone is trivial compared to the obliteration of forests and grasslands for the expansion of farmland. According to GreenFacts, a website dedicated to supplying facts about the environment, “More land was converted to cropland in the 30 years after 1950 than in the 150 years between 1700 and 1850.” That is to say, more habitats were destroyed in a 30 year time span, than a 150 year time span during the industrial revolution. Overpopulation has elevated the issue to unfathomable extremes. The more inhabitants an area has, the more space they need to thrive. Rural areas become an afterthought to the expansion of the cities. Farms are a necessity to human life, and they are being placed before the needs of the other inhabitants of Earth. Once beautiful, open fields, and dense green forests have been replaced with endless corn fields. “Nearly half of the world’s original forest cover has been lost, and each year another 16 million hectares are cut, bulldozed, or burned,” (Hinrichsen and Robey). Natural habitats are being destroyed at an alarming rate, and it has extreme consequences. Already endangered animals are at a higher risk of extinction due to the eradication of their natural habitats. Overfishing has disrupted the ocean’s ecosystem. Poaching has reached a new high. The animals commonly seen in zoos will soon be animals only seen in zoos.