Lessons Drawn From the Environmental Studies and Forestry Course

Human activities can cause serious negative effects on the environment, interfering with the attainment of sustainability. I have always known that human acts such as cutting down trees, pollution, or use of fossil fuels that emit greenhouse gases have adverse effects on the environment. However, I have never thought that activities focused on the development of an economy could cause serious damage to the environment. By undertaking the course on environmental studies and forestry, I learned that even though activities such as urbanization and construction of new housing are a sign of economic growth of a community, they have serious effects on the environment.

Urban sprawl and construction of many buildings result in more concrete covering the landscape, interrupting the natural water cycle. Moreover, uncontrolled expansion of urban locales bares groundwater from soaking into the ground and interfering with the growth of vegetation and forests. Construction of more houses in a region means forests and other vegetation must be cleared to avail the required land. This process has direct negative effects on the environment since it causes the destruction of vegetation and land degradation. Further, more buildings are a serious source of pollution that has negative effects on the environment. I now understand that some of the changes in the environment as a result of uncontrolled construction of houses are irreparable. The changes in the natural water cycle are irreversible, and as such, the damages are likely to ensue if prevention measures are not put in place.

The world population is rising and the need for many housing units remains pervasive. As such, more houses will be constructed. However, it is important that people change the materials and designs of the housing units. I will not only communicate on the importance of using sustainable building materials but will also advocate for the use of solar energy in housing units. I am now more focused on operating a green home through efficient use or resources, reusing and recycling, and promoting sustainability.

I was aware that human activities have a negative effect on the environment. However, during the class I have learned that urbanization and construction of new housing specifically can lead to irreparable damage, polluting groundwater and leading to land degradation. I now vow to be more environmentally conscious and focus on “green” living.

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