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For years, we have wondered about the phenomena of climate change. However, we are still unsure about the exact science behind such a drastic change. We can target a few reasons that bring about such a change or are the causative agents behind this phenomenon. But still, we are unable to specify all the human acts that have a direct effect on climate change. We do know the areas in which we can use methods or apply strategies that can reduce the risk factors associated with climate change, mainly the factor of carbon emissions. We can specify industrial economic and social sectors where we can reduce our carbon footprint.
There is still an increasing trend in the use of fossil fuels as the main source of energy, even today, when we are quite aware of the alternative sources of energy. The current global energy paradigm works on 85% energy from fossil fuels and only 2% of this energy comes from solar or wind sources.
Recent economic statistics suggest that by the end of the century we would have exhausted our fossil fuel sources. This would highly increase prices of all fossil fuel-based products.
The major reason for increasing greenhouse emissions around the world is carbon dioxide which is produced from burning fossil fuel-based products such as natural gas, coal and oil. In the US alone, carbon dioxide plays a role of 81% in the total greenhouse gas emissions.
Ideally, we should remove fossil fuels as our primary source of energy and switch it with alternative renewable resources. However, realistically it is not possible as it would lead to a sudden crash in technological and economic sectors. However, we do need to reduce the use of fossil fuels to stop the emission of carbon dioxide along with other greenhouse gases at a faster rate.
The best way to do that in the current situation is to start conserving fossil fuels as much as we can. Not only would this decrease the production of carbon dioxide, but it would also cause less negative effects on the environment by indirectly decreasing the mining and purification processes of fossil fuels.
How to conserve fossil fuels?
This method of conservation can be applied at any scale or level in an institution or a system. This means that even a common man can play the role in conserving fossil fuels.
1. Energy-efficient appliances
The first way we can do is being energy efficient which means then we should conserve electricity or any form of energy by reducing the unnecessary use of household equipment. Not only would this reduce the production of carbon dioxide, but it would also reduce the cost of electricity or other energy resources. However, this gives birth to the problem of overuse of energy-efficient appliances. This may not reduce the overall carbon dioxide production. So even after getting energy-efficient appliances we would urge you not to ‘run it without cause’.
2. Alternative energy resources
Another solution is to have individual energy supplies that use alternative sources of energy such as solar panels, wind turbines or keep biomass stoves. Many people are investing in these sources because they’re cheap and help in reducing the energy cost for the household as well as the government. They also reduce the use of fossil fuels to limit the production of carbon dioxide.
3. Avoid plastic products
One item from our daily life that is produced from fossil fuels is plastic. This item is mostly non-recyclable and causes a major problem for our waste disposal system. Most of the products manufactured from the plastic can only be used once so it’s better to use products sourced from alternative materials (not manufactured from fossil fuels), causing less damage to the environment.
4. Support sustainable factories as much as possible
Most of our products and the necessary items are manufactured in large factories. These factories use fossil fuels as their primary source of energy. The best way a common man can reduce this sector of fossil fuel use is by reusing or recycling daily life products. Another drastic change that can be implemented is to refuse or boycott the use of products that are manufactured using fossil fuels. We should try our best do use products made from alternative materials rather than fossil fuels. These products are sometimes known as Eco-friendly products.
5. Eco-friendly Transport
One of the biggest problems that we face nowadays is the increased traffic flow. Each year, the number of cars on the road increases exponentially. This not only causes a problem in our daily lives but also damages the environment and most importantly the air we breathe. We must reduce the use of our cars by preferring to walk short distances or use public transport when available. Another modern solution is to invest in hybrid or electric cars.
6. Grow locally or buy from locals
Another solution to conserve fossil fuel will not only help in reducing their use but will also help the economy of a country. Many of the food items that we buy from a grocery store have been imported from thousands of miles away in modes of transport that use a lot of fossil fuels as energy. A great way to tackle this is to buy foods that have been manufactured locally or consumed in the same place of origin. The most commonly imported food items are fruits and vegetables that can easily be grown in our own gardens.
These are the 6 strategies that even a layman can understand and implement to play his part in conserving fossil fuels and reducing carbon dioxide emissions.