Feelings of climate anxiety are skyrocketing, but optimism can persevere.

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Photo by Patryk Sobczak on Unsplash

It is very normal to feel uneasy about the state of the world. With the government removing crucial environmental legislation in the United States, it seems as if we are just moving backward in this fight.

However, in these unsettling times, there are ways to remain positive and hopeful about the future of the world, even in the wake of climate change.


Cosmetics, cleaning products, air fresheners, and even soaps are making the air harder to breathe.

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Photo by Clay Banks on Unsplash

Consumer products are steadily becoming a severe air pollution-related health threat. The specific pollutants are called volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which are gases emitted from various solids and liquids.

Automobiles using gasoline and factories burning fossil fuels release massive amounts of VOCs into the atmosphere. This is incredibly dangerous because VOCs react with other chemicals in the air to produce tropospheric ozone (not the protective kind in the ozone layer) and smog. Both pollutants are damaging to human health, causing a myriad of respiratory complications and cardiovascular diseases.

However, according to recent research, consumer products may emit equivalent amounts or even higher concentrations of VOCs than these outdoor sources. …


These laws are implemented for a reason and the government removing environmental regulations will have serious consequences.

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Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

The New York Times has a list of 100 environmental rules the Trump Administration has already rolled back or is planning to eliminate. As of June 2020, Trump has removed 66 of these 100 regulations. The authors of the NY Times article have separated the environmental rules by category including air pollution and emissions, drilling and extraction, infrastructure and planning, animals, toxic substances and safety, and water pollution. There is also an “other” category.

Every regulation that the Trump Administration rolls back, under all of these categories, will be disastrous and create severe adverse effects for climate change, public health, wildlife, and the economy. …


That little plant on the sidewalk may have a bigger job than you think.

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Air and water pollution, floods, sewage overflows, and increasing global temperatures all threaten cities and the health of residents. Green infrastructure mimics the natural world to help cities adapt to these environmental hazards and climate change-related risks. Cities can tailor green infrastructure projects to its specific needs, providing a myriad of benefits for public health and safety, wildlife, and the environment.

Effective Stormwater Management


Several states are attempting to pass legislation mandating climate change curriculum in K-12 instruction.

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Photo by CDC on Unsplash

The National Center for Science Education (NCSE) published a list of 18 pieces of legislation, across 10 states, all focused on climate change education. These bills would increase the amount of climate change, sustainability, and environmental science concepts taught in public schools.

Arizona

In Arizona, Senate Bill 1368 calls for the State Board of Education to include climate change instruction based on the 2013 Next Generation Science Standards. These standards outline a framework for teachers to integrate climate change lessons into their K-12 classrooms.

Many parts of Arizona are already feeling the effects of global warming with dangerously high-temperature spikes increasing over the past decade. In Arizona, 84% of parents support education on human-driven climate change, but a majority of schools still lack these teachings. …


Your “flushable” wipes have tremendous sewage consequences.

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Photo by Twitter: @jankolario on Unsplash

The word “fatberg” combines from “fat” and “iceberg” and is used to describe the massive accumulations of non-biodegradable waste consumers flush down their toilets and drains. Household items, such as cleaning products, baby wipes, napkins, and tissues, are often marketed as flushable, but these labels are misleading. Instead of breaking down in the toilet water, the products just aggregate in sewers and create fatbergs.

About

Isabella Powers

MPA in Environmental Science & Policy from Columbia University. I write about climate change, environmental legislation, and sustainable living habits.

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