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  • Grigas D. (2016, May)



    Darius Grigas Student Number: 1311837 Dissertation: Politics

  • Grigas D. (2016, May)


    ABSTRACT The world in a general view seems to be very polluted and misbalanced. After many years of consistency in terms of our environment there is a need to examine particular changes in more detail. The project attempts to show that most of our environmental issues are man-made, but there are ways to reverse the harm done to nature. I will go through the issues that are important not only for us at the present, but for our future generations as well. I will also suggest how may we adopt, rather than try to overcome nature and live with one in harmony. My study also reveals the lack of participation not only on the individual, but on a global scale as well, arguing that states could do more to secure their resources.

  • Grigas D. (2016, May)


    Content page


    Chapter 1: Everything contributes to one big crisis.5

    1.1 Pollution...5

    1.2 Deforestation...6

    1.3 Climate change...7

    1.4 Consumerism and the environment.8

    Chapter 2: Methodology...9

    Chapter 3: Findings..11

    Chapter 4: How does global governance react to environmental


    Chapter 5: New technologies and solutions.17

    5.1 Aquaponics.....17

    5.2 Free energy and clean water19




  • Grigas D. (2016, May)


    INTRODUCTION I was born at the end of the 20th century. Environmental issues never came across me

    as a devastating problem in our society. Only recently academics have realized how many

    issues are approaching us and our future generations. After some research done, I have

    realized that many of these issues did not exist prior the industrialization period, which evolved

    in the 19th and 20th centuries.

    The chapters in this project will help me come to a conclusion step-by-step. At the

    beginning of the dissertation I will review the environmental issues that in my opinion are man-

    made. The first chapter will include issues such as deforestation, pollution and climate change

    in order to show that the planet is degrading. At the end of the chapter I will identify consumers

    as a primary cause for our environmental degradation.

    In the second chapter I will use normative theory to try and persuade the reader to

    rethink his contribution to the safety of the environment on a daily basis. By the help of

    quantitive and experimental political methods I will explore and test environmental awareness of

    individuals from different backgrounds to see whether environmental education is necessary.

    The findings themselves will be explored by evaluating my personal experiment, an

    awareness test and normative theory. Each of which is crucially important for the success of this

    project. The study itself will review how environmentally aware is a small group of people and

    how difficult was using the experimental political science. The chapter will end with an interview

    that has provided with a lot of information that is relevant to the study.

    The next chapter will discuss environmental policies and governmental actions in terms

    of the environment. It seems that global governance is not ready for the shift that is inevitable in

    my opinion, but no action has been taken and silence is their only weapon to fight in this battle

    for our eco-system. The chapter shows that there is no crucial action taken by our global

    governance in order to reverse this man-made harm for the environment.

    The following chapter will introduce my proposed solutions to revive our eco-system,

    which will include solutions for water, food and energy supplies. The main argument in this

    chapter is that there is new technology to implement in our everyday lives and that anyone can

    practice it. The chapter will introduce how scholars around the world are discussing the

    possibility of becoming self-sufficient.

    At the final stage of the paper I will conclude what should we do in relation to Normative

    theory and what could the states do to promote self-sufficiency and sustainability, before the

    environment made it inevitable.

  • Grigas D. (2016, May)



    In this chapter my goal is to introduce the reader with the harm already done to the

    environment. The Issues we are going to be looking at is deforestation, plastic pollution, air

    pollution, climate change and the harm that these will bring upon our species.

    1.1 Pollution.

    According to Eriksen et.al(2014) our seas are contaminated by plastic pieces and other

    waste that is getting dumped out in the water. Their study claims that in 2014 there was trillions

    of plastic pieces floating at sea: based on our model results we estimate that at least 5.25

    trillion plastic particles weighting 268,940 tons are currently floating at sea.(2014,pp.7) The

    numbers are hard to imagine and to think of collecting all the particles would be a task that

    would carry on for decades. The authors also explain that this type of pollution has a huge

    impact on the biological wellbeing of the sea creatures that are being trapped in the waste and

    die due to the toxic level of contaminated water, which is clearly man-made. They also argue

    that: this leaves sequestration in sediment the likely resting place for plastic pollution after a

    myriad of biological impacts along the way, thus reinforcing the need for pre-consumer and

    post-consumer waste stream solutions to reverse this growing environmental problem.(Eriksen

    et.al,2014,pp.11-12) My main fear of this problem is that the seas may become so contaminated

    that we will not be able to feed of them anymore. Sea-life might get contaminated to such a level

    from our toxic pollution that will be no longer edible, but the authors have a deeper concern

    looking at the present, because their expectations were to find a lot more by their statistical

    research of this sort of pollution and yet the true issue remains: Where is all the


    Despite sea pollution, there are other types of pollution that we need to be concentrated

    on, it is growing much faster - air pollution. In urban areas pollution is mostly caused by vehicles

    in the city.(Ayed et.al,2015) The CO2 emissions spread by vehicles are the most common toxic

    waste in urban areas, where in Europe it contributes to 20% of all emission in the air according

    to Ayed et.al, who did a study on urban pollution in Nis, Serbia. The study was in regards to

    traffic inspired emissions. The analysis showed that in busier streets the emission levels are

    much higher than in other less busy streets: on observed sections, the specific emissions are

    11 times higher compared to the rest of the streets in the city.(Ayed et.al,2015,pp.2743) In spite

    of air pollution at such rates, it will harm the public living in the city. Szyszkowicz in 2015

  • Grigas D. (2016, May)


    claimed that there is a great harm coming, in terms of air pollution, where he claims that: to

    describe the same reality: risk of public health deterioration due to air pollution.(2015, pp.829)

    In regards the author also says that it is a:modifiable health risk factor.(2015,pp.823) In spite,

    here is another issue that may be added to the man-made crisis, which is dissolving our

    population very slowly. First, we need to consider what does air pollution lead us to? The

    answer is greenhouse gasses. CO2 emissions are one of the major contributors for the

    greenhouse effect.(Indira et.al,2012) Authors Indira and Srividya in 2012 wrote a paper

    analyzing other types of greenhouse emissions. The paper was written in regards to live stock

    and that it may produce a huge amount of toxic waste which will contribute to greenhouse

    emissions. They named livestock food chains as large contributors to greenhouse emissions.

    Livestock, as for example pigs produce 4 times more waste then humans. Livestock producers

    grow thousands of pigs in a small area, which may produce waste equivalent to a small country

    side town. It is a lot of waste to use environmentally friendly, but the need for meat in the 21st

    century is desperate, because people like to eat a lot and the variety of choice inspired by a

    consumer society will only increase the number of livestock in such farms. According to Indira

    and Srividya, livestock may be related to cause other environmental harms, for instance

    deforestation due to farm size increase.

    1.2 Deforestation

    It is known that tree's clean our air. The issues with deforestation is that we are

    destroying our filters from the face of our polluted globe. There are many participants within this

    environmental issue scope. Many may say that deforestation is a cause of urbanization or even


    T. Tsurumi and S. Managi in 2014 did a research on trade openness effects in relation to

    deforestation. According to them there are 4 main causes that relate to deforestation: ...the

    desire to convert forest to pasture and crop land, increasing fuel wood demand, the harvesting

    on logs and urbanization.(2014,pp.307) Their study showed that an increase of trade openness

    will slow down deforestation for developed countries and that it will increase it for developing

    countries. In Pakistans case deforestation has caused much environmental changes in 'Thak

    Valley'.(Batool et.al,2015) The results of an area of a forest destroyed is various climatic

    changes that has inspired the lack of rainfall. It must be noted that trees are really long growers

    and it must be done in a more sustainable manner. With the current depletion of forest areas

    around the world, it is important that we must manage these renewable resources in a

    sustainable manner. Deforestation may lead to greater impacts of our eco-system, because it

    also has an effect on wildlife.(Eaton et.al,2015) Wildlife has to migrate every time humans

    decide to destroy their homes. Eaton et.al (2015), in their research has analyzed the effect of

    deforestation for white-lipped peccary, and due to it there are populations destroyed for the

  • Grigas D. (2016, May)


    inability to migrate to new areas. Their work identifies rather similar consequences in terms of

    deforestation: deforestation and expansion of large-scale cattle ranching and agriculture on the

    plateaus encircling the Pantanal, hydroelectric projects in head water basins, gold and iron

    mining, and environmentally disastrous development schemes for increasing barge traffic on the

    Rio Paraguay.(2015,pp.491) Deforestation has a negative impact on people as well. It does

    produce other issues as a lack of clean air, soil degradation, wildlife destruction, climate related


    1.3 Climate change

    Climate change has been a result of all the issues previously listed above.

    Everything has a major impact to our eco-system that is surrounding us. In 2011, the

    Population and Development review on climate change was showed as a real concern

    for international security. According to the document, the latest increase in temperature

    did not occur for several thousands of years, but suddenly everything has changed and

    the increase in temperature rise did happen after the start of the 20th century. The total

    temperature increase was by 0.76C(Celsius), but most of it happened at the end of the

    20th century, when climate change has been finally recognized as a major threat and

    more research finally came into place. Even though these numbers do not say a lot, but

    it does show a big influence made to our eco-system. There are many ways how this

    has grown to be an issue on such scale. Probably the most important issues surrounding

    environmental disasters is their outcomes:...the International Displacement Monitoring

    Centre (IDMC) estimated that sudden natural disasters displaced 42million people in

    2010.(2014,pp.604) These sudden natural disasters are the cause of all of our impact

    done to nature. There are other issues that are surrounding climate change, which is

    food insecurity, conflict over resources and growing global insecurity. According to the

    World Bank study:a one-meter sea-level rise would affect 84 developing countries

    alone.(2014,604), these numbers are frightening just by thinking how many countries

    with coasts will have cities built around them. The world as we know it will never be the

    same due to the environmental issues, that we humans have created ourselves. All the

    issues that I have mentioned above contributes to global warming. Pollution, greenhouse

    gasses, deforestation..., does eventually end up in the stage of climate change. It affects

    us greatly, but in this paper I will not attempt to discuss the issues in more detail, but

    rather evaluate how is this leading us to be more sufficient, sustainable and why is this

    issues our responsibility to fix.

  • Grigas D. (2016, May)


    1.4 Consumerism and the environment

    Environmental degradation is considered to be caused by consumer behavior. (Popescu

    and Iosim,2015) G. Popescu and I. Iosim in 2015 has carried out a study, which acknowledged

    that consumer behavior is a huge part of what we see today in our environmental outcomes.

    Despite the outcomes, the authors claim that the power to reverse how consumers polluted the

    planet is possible. In 1996, Britain had a situation of the so called 'Mad Cow Disease'*, which

    left millions of people changing their daily diet in spite of the disease: Such feeding phobias led

    to distrust the methods of modern industrial production, especially in the food industry, as a

    result of the logic expressed by many consumers, namely when you turn cows into cannibals

    only for money obvious that the things do not work properly. It was suggested that we live in a

    risk society'(Popescu and Iosim,2015,pp.123) such a risk society is responsible for building up

    such corporations that bring genetically modified organisms (GMO) on the shelves of the

    supermarket. In spite of the power to build-up such organizations there is also power to

    demolish them. The power to put such organs in decline is by boycotting them, which requires

    massive shifts in opinions: a negative experience can trigger an organized and devastating

    reaction, as when a consumer group organize a boycott of the products of the

    company.(Popescu and Iosim,2015,pp.125) In relation to this claim the power of consumer

    choices may be very devastating not only for big supply chains, but to their personal health as

    well. The case also applies in terms of their casted votes in their local governments: Political

    consumer 'votes for his own shopping cart' in attempt to make companies to take into account

    the natural environment, but also the human one,'(Popescu and Iosim,2015,pp.126) There is

    a need to realize that consumerism works 'vice versa' - You get for what you vote. The next

    chapter will overlook the methodology and practices c...


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