Global warming is a reality that is no longer being denied but many people are still not informed on the issues relating to the environment.
There are many myths surrounding climate change and the importance of living green.
Lutfiyah Suliman, a Project Manager at the Wildlife & Environment Society of South Africa a non-governmental organisation advocating against pollution and global warming, says that people neglect the environment in different ways such as:
- poor natural resource extraction methods;
- the use of non- renewable resources which pollute land, air and water;
- wasteful production and consumption;
- poor waste disposal and creation of large amounts of waste materials which take many years to break down, such as plastic.
"The act of not taking care of our environment leads to climate change," Sulima said.
The effects of climate change vary affecting rainfall, the periods of seasons, the ability to plough in particular areas and seasons.
“Climate change affects global weather patterns and results in extremes of temperature, especially extreme hot temperatures in places that previously did not experience such high temperatures,” she said.
Suliman said this was felt most by poorer communities, where the means to adapt to and resist these changes were not widespread.
According to the environmentalist, the situation can be remedied by actively seeking knowledge that can equip them to understand who and what is having a negative effect on the quality of the air, water and land around them,” she said.
Suliman told Vuk’uzenzele that the environment could be protected by “behavioural changes”. She said: “Being more conscious of consumption habits, buying less and reusing more, recycling where possible, and acting as a community to ensure environmental injustices are followed up on and resolved,” said Suliman.
She called on people to use the available resources such as buyback centres in order to reduce, reuse and recycle waste.