domingo, 13 de fevereiro de 2011

And the best Writing Activities are... (Level 6)

Continuando a publicação das melhores redações do semestre, vamos ao nível 6. Do mesmo jeito que no semestre passado, pedi um ensaio relacionado a qualquer assunto verde. De novo, o semestre rendeu criativamente e eu tive não só um, mas dois ensaios excelentes sobre dois aspectos ambientais bem diversos. Parabéns aos quatro DearStudents laureados!

by Thaís Ventura
Sustainable transportation

Global warming brings significant challenges for cities and transportation is one of the sectors that most contributes with this. Therefore the need to plan for sustainable transportation is evident. Sustainability and sustainable development have been the main theme of many international conferences, but no strategy for sustainable transportation systems was established and approved in mutual agreement by all countries so far. However, across the globe each city is trying to implement their own sustainable policies.

Planning for sustainable transportation systems is a complex task that involves multiple options, since prioritizing public transportation system until discouraging car use and promoting non-motorized modes such as cycling. With this range of alternatives, the planning for sustainable transportation systems is very uncertain. Governments should seek an optimal package of policies that is happily accepted by all affected groups and this “solution” could be very difficult to find.

A successful example is the case of exclusive bus lanes. Analysis of the environmental impacts generated by exclusive bus lanes shows that these transportation systems lead to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions responsible for global warming and provide other benefits such as better use of energy, reduction of fuel consumption and accidents. This system was implemented in the city of Curitiba, Brazil, and in the city of Bogotá, Colômbia, and both have the same achievements.

Although there is not a common policy on sustainable transportation planning in all countries, individual efforts to move towards sustainable transportation can show significant results.

by Rodrigo Acosta
The Renewable Energy Advantages

Our world faces a lot of enviromental issues nowadays, and it seems that people started worrying more about it than they did in the past. There are a lot of Non-Governamental-Organizations today that care about helping animals and nature, and a lot of factories and industries that reduced the amount of non-renewable energy used in making their products. All of it is a reflect of the current situation of the Earth. Global warming is a scary thought that is becoming true and it could affect the lifestyle of a lot of people in the world.

One of the biggest problems that have to be confronted is that the majority source of energy in the world is provided by fossil fuels. This kind of energy is not the best to be used, because it releases a lot of toxic gasses to the atmosphere that contribute with global warming. These fuels also have not appeared easily on Earth and it took a lot of years for them to be done. Some fossil fuels that are in our daily life are gasoline, mineral coal, diesel oil and natural gas.

What should be done to confront that is the use of renewable energy. This kind of energy is called that way because it can be obtained again without a lot of effort, instead as the energy of fossil fuels, that take a lot of years to be done. The renewable energy has the great advantage that it does not polute as much as the fossil fuels. In some cases, it does not polute at all. So why is not everybody using this kind of energy? Because it is expensive to change from the non-renewable to the renewable source of energy. The commercial profits would only be noticed some years later, and that is not what the big factories want. Thankfully, a lot of consumers have demonstrated interest in products with “green energy” and it is stimulating the industries to change their source of energy.

People noticed that if we live in the future the way we lived until today, the world would be a bad place to live, but with baby steps we are starting to change that. The energy factor is not the only problem that we face nowadays, there are a lot more things to be done in other areas as well, but if we spread the ideas once at a time, people will understand it more easily and support the idea. So, the next time you buy something, be sure if the company that made what you are buying uses renewable energy. It may not be a lot to do, but if we support the ones that already use it, we are saying that we want a better world in the future.

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