Environmental Conservation

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This article explains what environmental conservation is and why it's so important. Examples of environmental protection measures.

What is the conservation of the environment?

The conservation of the environment, environmental conservation or environmental protection, refers to the different ways that exist to regulate, minimize or prevent the damage that industrial, agricultural, urban, commercial or other activities cause to natural ecosystems, and mainly to the flora and fauna.

The conservation of the environment is the primary objective of conservationism, a social movement in defense of ecological policies and laws, and its values ​​are biodiversity, biotic balance, landscape harmony, among others. This position, however, isn't identical to that of environmentalists, nor should it be confused with it. The latter advocate the non- exploitation of natural resources, while conservationists demand a responsible and sustainable exploitation in environmental terms.

The conservation of the environment is the product of various reasons, such as:

  • Scientific reasons The preservation of genetic biodiversity is key to sustaining life on earth, in addition to the fact that irreparable ecological damage often has unpredictable chemical and biological repercussions, which may well threaten human health.
  • Economic reasons. Sustainable exploitation, which allows the replacement of natural resources and does not destroy the habitat in which they are found, becomes more profitable in the long term, since these last much longer than if they are simply looted and depleted in a short time.
  • Cultural reasons. Many exploitable territories carry an important cultural value for diverse populations, who consider them places of pilgrimage or mystical contact, if not simply part of the tourist and traditional attraction of their countries.
  • Ethical reasons. Given the above reasons, the State has the ethical obligation to safeguard the common good of its inhabitants and, together with the other States, of the species. To do this you must preserve the environment.
  • Social reasons. The indiscriminate and often illegal exploitation of resources tends to have a negative impact on the weakest societies, causing low-paid work, poverty, misery, disease, etc.
  • Legal reasons. There is international legislation that defends the environment and whose obedience is considered a mandate of the nations.

Importance of environmental conservation

Environmental defense is key in the industrial world that inaugurated the 20th century, since it constitutes one of the brakes on the economic ambition of human beings and their desire to transform and commercialize raw materials, which usually has dire consequences for other forms of life, when not for the human being himself.

Epidemics, climatic catastrophes, extinctions, resource depletion and a long etcetera are the consequences of an irresponsible industrial policy, which eventually returns to human beings like a boomerang.

Types of environmental conservation

Environmental conservation is based on three fundamental lines of action:

  • Organization of space. So that the exploitation occurs in controllable terms and includes various options for access to resources, to choose the most appropriate.
  • Protection of heritage. Each country has a historical, natural and cultural legacy that is part of its identity and its own existence, which must be protected from predatory hands.
  • Guarantee the production base. Prevent the depletion or misappropriation of non-renewable natural resources, such as oil, of high industrial value but enormous environmental risks during extraction and transportation, so that economic activity can be sustained.

Examples of conservation measures

Some important measures for environmental preservation are:

  • Promote environmental education. Educate the population to consume and work in an eco-responsible way, choosing well what products to use, how to dispose of their waste and how to minimize the damage that their way of life does to the environment.
  • Encourage savings. Natural resources such as water, electricity (whose generation consumes raw materials) or food must be managed responsibly, both by the population and by the business world, remembering that resources are limited and needs infinite.
  • Environmental laws. The punishment for those who deteriorate the environment should be exemplary, whether it's a company that dumps toxic waste into a lake, a home that generates excess non-recyclable garbage or a car owner who does not comply with a minimum environmental regulation.
  • Use of alternative energies. The substitution of fossil fuels and other traditional methods of industrial activity for others that are more environmentally friendly will always be a good idea in the future.

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