The Effect of Humans on the Environment

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The Effect of Humans on the Environment

Human activity has a huge impact on the environment, and because of the increase in global population in the past century there has been an increase in the effect on the environment. Such things include more land being used for agriculture, transport, housing and other developments. With a growing population there is an even bigger impact on our environment, which comes from economic factors and industrial requirements.

Between 1945 and 1975, there was the 'Green Revolution', and this brought a doubling of world food production. The agricultural chemicals, such as fertilisers and pesticides, had a lot to do with this success. The fertilisers made it possible to grow crops where the soil was previously too poor. Their use dramatically increases crop yields, but artificial fertilisers can cause pollution if they drain into rivers and streams. Also there are the pesticides, and these have been used to kill unwanted insects that eat crops, weeds that compete with crops, and fungi that cause disease. Without the use of pesticides, just under 50% of a crop could be lost (45% to be precise). Pesticides have also saved millions of people's lives by killing insects that spread harmful diseases, such as malaria, typhus, and yellow fever. But if the pesticides happened to get into the food chain that would be very dangerous.
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Humans also have an effect on air pollution, as we are the ones who cause most of it. We are filling the air with a number of harmful gases, like exhaust fumes, carbon dioxide, sulphur dioxide and chlorofluorocarbons (C.F.C'S). Our cars give out poisonous gases, which are called exhaust fumes, and they contain lead, carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides and unburnt hydrocarbons. Cars cause most of our pollution as a huge 60-90% of motor exhaust fumes are let out into our atmosphere.

Carbon dioxide is contributing to the greenhouse effect. This is because it is given off ...

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