Dear 21st century humans,
We’ve taken the process of immortalizing ourselves to another level completely. Our footprint on this world is much bigger than what I earlier shared.
I’m sure you have studied the spheres of the Earth’s ecosystem. They are-
- Hydrosphere- water.
- Lithosphere- land.
- Atmosphere- Air.
- Biosphere- the narrow zone of interaction of the above mentioned spheres, where life exists.
Guess what? Textbooks are going to change. And your kids will most definitely study not just about these 4 spheres, but another sphere that has come into existence known as the anthroposphere.
Our activities have reached a level where, not only are we influenced by these spheres (as was the case in the past), but we are also influencing the 4 spheres of the ecosystem. It’s not that we didn’t influence the ecosystem and the spheres in the past; every mammal has an influence on the ecosystem. It’s the magnitude of influence that we are having on the ecosystem is what has prompted many scientists to add another sphere into the Earth’s systems.
The anthroposhere today comprises of the cities, industries, technology; basically, all marks of an “advanced” civilization.
Here are but a few examples of the effect the anthroposhere is having-
- Human inventions such as the CFC (Chloro-fluro-carbons) used for refrigeration are being released into the atmosphere. These compounds react with the Ozone molecules and breaks them up into Oxygen molecules and a single Oxygen atom.
You might say, “Wow! that’s a good thing! we’re getting more oxygen!” Hold your horses. That oxygen is not accessible to any living thing. And most importantly, the ozone molecules that have the ability to protect life on the surface from harmful solar radiations is being destroyed, affecting the entire ecosystem of the Earth.
- Emission of monstrous amounts of waste from each city to it’s nearby rivers. What does it do? Oh, where do I even start.
- It converts the river into a drain. For example, the wastes of the city of New Delhi goes straight into the Yamuna river. So much so that, apparently, the Yamuna near and after Delhi is not a “river” anymore. It is a stream of wastes.
- It creates such horrible conditions for water life forms.
- Not to mention, it’s that water that is goes into the groundwater, which we eventually drink (Yuk).
It’s strange, how everything we have ever done for our own betterment has only caused harm to our home, isn’t it?
You get the drift. The effect humans are having on the ecosystem is HUGE (I’ve added every emphasis delivering effect available to me to that word). The whole idea of “anthroposhpere” has come into the picture because we are affecting our world to such a large extent that every living and non living entity is feeling us.
If another human being “felt” us in this way, we would be jailed, or worse.
It’s strange how everything we have ever done for our own betterment has only caused harm for our home.
Can we change that trend? The 4 spheres that existed before we entered the party survived harmoniously, without any cause to worry for any living organism. Do you think our sphere can stop being the bully of the ecosystem and start making some friends?
I think so. How?
Hey, I can’t tell you everything in just one letter! Stay tuned 😉
Fellow 21st century human.
Categories: Environmental Degradation