Posted: Friday, December 14, 2012 3:54:54 AM
The world that I live in has the ability to be quite perplexing at times. The high rise buildings and smog filled air stand in stark contrast to the calming breeze of a country day. The cold, mile high mountain peaks stand out against the deep valleys. Then there is the varied, wide array of ideological differences between countries, regions, communities, and individuals themselves. This is the world I come from; the world around me. For me, the concerns of the world were never shared. I went through my adolescence feeling as though my world was comprised solely of school and my small social life. I soon found out that I was wrong.
My perception of the world came crashing down when, in AP Environmental Science, the class watched a film about the true world around me. In plain but profound images, this documentary covered the magnitude of damage inflicted on the earth by human; showcasing the environment—in its already dilapidated state—and even made predictions as to what condition it would soon be in if this blatant disrespect for the environment continues. Just as the mountains contradict the valley; my picture perfect life contradicted the world of problems that plagued the environment.
Before this moment, I was enveloped in suburban life, where such things as desertification and erosion were far and away. With this film, my artificial reality was shattered and my perception of the world I live in was redefined. This new definition included a world where the environment is suffering; where the world is being destroyed by degradation and deforestation, excessive resource use and choking pollution. From that point on, no longer was a wrapped up in my own petty a youth issues, but instead I though in terms of how my actions effected my world—my environment. With my newfound realization, I sought out ways to become more active in my environment; participating in coastal cleanups—picking up trash on beaches to avoid water pollution—and even becoming vice-president of my high school’s Green Team, a club dedicated to increasing environmental awareness.
Green Team has given me the platform I needed to spread knowledge and understanding to the atrocities we as humans are committing on the earth’s systems. . I have researched local events and activities that Green Team can participate in to help our community. I hope that through these community tasks, I am making a difference in the environment and also in the minds of those who are unconvinced of the severity of the situation at hand.
It is my responsibility as an individual to be aware of the environment and my own personal effects on it. However, I strive to instill the same determination into others and to “be the change” that saves our environment from an untimely fate.