- April 2, 2012
- Posted by: essay
- Category: Sample essay papers
The abovementioned facts lead to the important conclusion that concrete and real problems of urban ecology need philosophical synthesis of the scientific data that reproduce the real process of increasing human impacts on nature and especially on human populations as basic units of the process of adaptation development. A person is no longer considered a barrier of all the features of population; human populations (including urban) are not a genetic-biological sum, but a biological whole, which has specific patterns of variability bearing group character (e.g. phenomenon of geographically abnormal hemoglobin) (Hoffmann, 1993).
Population-genetic variability of a modern urban man in the aspect of its biological evolution is carried out by natural selection. This is evidenced by empirical facts: 1% of stillborn, 15% of all pregnancies are spontaneous abortions; 10% of childless marriage, as well as stable incidence of severe hereditary diseases in each generation, resistance to infectious diseases, etc. (Fuchs, 2001). On the one hand, selection increases the integration of human genotype; on the other – supports intraspecific genetic polymorphism (Hoffmann, 1993). However, population-genetic change is a process of adaptation to the anthropogenic environment and its culture. Researches on a number of genetic markers show that harmful agents perform selective functions: genotypically stable people possessing higher adaptability, endure anthropogenic overload easier, get sick less frequently, and have less severe clinical forms of diseases (Yunus, 2000).
But the question is still how a modern urban man (In our case, a New Yorker) can protect himself from the ecological stress. Being unable to refuse from radio, mobile phones, television, overhead lighting, and automobiles, people just need to be armed with useful information about proper healthy lifestyle and learn how to use it in practice. Specialist state that one of the simplest ways of resisting ecological stress is to leave urban jungle periodically, go on vacation outside the city, getting body free of stress for some time: walk barefoot, live on the ground level, eat natural food, wear less synthetic clothing, correct mode of work and rest and dose information load. While many anti-ecologic factors influence the body through the nervous system, the resultant stress can be overcome by using modern methods of psychological self-help. Their essence lies in teaching a person to “switch on” natural state of the nervous system. Internal reserves and healing power of the organism in this position help relieve stress and neutralize the negative impact of environment violations (Rose, 2009).
The problem can also be solved by giving preference to using alternative energy sources reducing emissions of harmful gases to the atmosphere. The world’s first ecological billboard is going to be set in Times Square in New York. A bright billboard will be working only from alternative energy sources – wind and sun. To power the billboard, it will be equipped with 64 solar panels and 16 turbines. The billboard will be placed in the windiest spot of the square – at the corner of two streets. Its approximate weigh will be about 16 tons. The manufacturers have not specified the cost of ecologically clean advertising, but it will be obviously quite a lot. But the benefit for the environment will be invaluable. One such billboard can prevent the emission into the atmosphere of about 20 tons of pollutants per year. On the other hand though, such measures will require significant investment.
For a number of objective reasons, the world community unevenly comes to realize the necessity of environmental policy. Industrialized countries relying on the power of their capacity, have managed to partly stabilize ecological situation. In the forefront of national environmental policy is put the implementation of economic and technological models that allow combining interests of economic growth and protection of habitat. An important point of perspective environmental policy is seen in further applying methods economic regulation, in particular better use of market potential in the service of ecology. Modern environmental policy includes various directions, such as organization of a system of managing environmental activity; its legal security; methods of financing and economic regulation in the field of environment and natural resources; information provision, etc.
In our opinion, the implementation of environmental policy requires from the state diverse activities, but it is absolutely impossible without ecologization of public consciousness. According to interviewing data, to the question: “Why do not you participate in environmental activities?”, 40,8% of respondents answered that they should be carried out by specialists; 20,1% feel the lack of environmental knowledge; 19,1% of respondents stated the lack of adequate institutional conditions; 9,2% believe that there are more interesting and useful things, etc. (Bennett, 2006). Therefore, nowadays issues of ecological culture associated with preservation of moral and spiritual values require special consideration.
Environmental consciousness is understood as deep, brought to automatism understanding of the inextricable connection between man and nature, the dependence of human well-being from integrity and relative constancy of natural human environment (Yunus, 2000). The ecologization of social consciousness has procedural character, involving the following stages: firstly, the manifestation of man’s relationship to nature in the form of various emotions (indifference, concern, anxiety, etc.); secondly, the formation of a deep interest in the environmental problems (identifying the essence of evolutionary changes in the biosphere, determination of its integrity, etc.), thirdly, the shift from thinking and understanding to social action, moral action; and fourthly, the establishment of relations between man and nature as elements of internal culture of a personality (Zahran, 2008).
In this aspect, the level of environmental consciousness and the level of culture are indications of how deeply and diversely the society involves the nature to the socially significant functioning on the basis of meaningful understanding and practical use of its development. Ecological imperative of biospheric ethics requires that the humanity should act so that the regularities of development of the biosphere were the aim, not just the means of human activity. In general, the way of modern life, especially the urban one, in many respects does not conform to the way the nature created it. Therefore, environmental stress is inevitable as such. And since people cannot abandon the benefits of civilization and return to primitive life, the only one way out is to learn how to resist the problems created by this civilization.