Any Nature program needs to discuss the threats to our environment and the elements of nature. In the 21st century we live in a world full of incredibly impact on soil, air, plants, water and animals. Just think of the number of animals facing extinction. WWF estimates there are only 3,000 tigers left on the planet. While our program celebrates nature and these elements, NBL must build awareness of the threats to our environment and elements of nature.
We are not debating the source of most of this degradation, as humans are by far the largest source of the threats. However, it is our approach to not scare students about the threats or make these threats over dramatic. Clear statements and examples, but we are not preaching or scaring our students.
Hopefully, NBL’s Threat Section illustrates the dangers without creating any hysteria. We are sensitive to this issue as it has been noted in many programs that students have become depressed and even frightened by the many books, articles, lectures, TV shows and movies on extinction, global warming and toxic chemicals.
Soil: Pesticides are a clear threat. Because we are cutting a lot of trees in our effort to clear land for housing or agriculture, we create conditions for erosion. We also over-farm our lands, and this wears out our soil.
Animals: So many animals are facing threats and even extinction as we reduce their habitat with man’s expansion and needs for land. With more farms, more houses, bigger cities…our animals are threatened. Animals are also threatened with toxic chemicals we throw up into the air or spray on the land.
Water: Toxic chemicals that we our factory use often leech into our water. So many rivers and streams have become sick from these chemicals, and this in turn threaten our fish, crabs and shrimp. Even plastic fills our oceans and the micro-plastics are ingested by our fish.
Wood (Plants): Our world uses a tremendous amount of wood for newspapers and housing. We are using more than we are producing, and we are cutting down Tropical Rain Forest to do this. Many plants are grown with chemicals, and these harsh chemicals are harmful to our environment. While organic farming is the obvious solution, this type of farming is only a small percentage of all farming.
Air: We throw up a lot of smoke (carbon) from fossil fuels. We use coal or oil to heat homes and to create electricity. We use oils and gas to run our cars, ships and trains, and these vehicles throw up toxic fumes into our air. Factories are huge sources of pollution, and our air has become less and less healthy.