Nicodemus Wilderness Project
Nicodemus Wilderness Project
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Nicodemus Wilderness Project


NWP Global Registry of Apprentice Ecologists - Newport Beach, California, USA

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Newport Beach, California, USA
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Registered: December 2017
City/Town/Province: Irvine
Posts: 1
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It seems to many humans that they have the most power in the world. In the 21st century we are living in an era where technology, order, and energy are thriving. Mass production of food and architecture allows human population to exponentially increase. We are defying laws of nature, clearing out Earth to let the maximum number of people to live in. To us, the word "more" seems to be what drives us and gives motivation to survive. We constantly need more money, more food, more energy, more technology, and more humans. Having "more" of one of these seems not to satisfy us, but drives us to seek even greater. This continuous cycle eventually makes us blinded to the most important part of our lives: nature.
Everything comes from Earth. This seems very straight forward, since everyone lives on Earth. However, when seeking for "more," this fact gets strongly neglected. The planet Earth has only a specific amount of resources. The first law of thermodynamics states that no matter can be created nor destroyed. In other words, everything on Earth stays on Earth, and nothing on Earth can increase in quantity. Humans like to rely on nonrenewable forms of energy for their living. Nonrenewable resources will take a tremendous amount of time for it to come back to its original form, and thus its use should be considered carefully. Many evidences present already show that humans are taking up resources much faster than the rate at which the planet can recreate itself. Toxins and carbon dioxide are piling up in natural environments and harming ecosystems.
It will take many years for humans to bring back our planet to its healthy form again. It seems as if the problem is on a larger scale than what a highschool girl can solve. Of course, I cannot save Earth alone. However, I can take small steps to ensure that I make a difference in the world.
The butterfly effect theory proposes that one small change in one state will lead to a much larger change in the later state. This idea first came up in my head when I signed up for Second Sunday Restoration Program in Newport Beach on December 10, 2017. The program was about restoring Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve and watering native plants in the area. I watered about 30 plants on that day. If I hadn't gone to water the plants that day, there's a high chance that most of the 30 plants would not have been watered by other volunteers. I made a choice to take initiative and help a local environment. Those 30 plants that I watered may perhaps create living habitats and food sources for wild animals. As more plants animals flourish in the area, the environment will soon become a healthy ecosystem. A healthy ecosystem will bring benefits to neighboring towns due to its scenery and diversity. All ecosystems are connected to each other and create a biome. With just my one choice, the possible outcomes are infinite.
Naval Adm. William H. McRaven's speech on May 19, 2014 really struck me. He encouraged everyone to make their beds before attempting to change the world. Making your own bed is small but a very crucial step that allows you to complete bigger tasks. Even though this only takes about 3 minutes to complete, many people do not have the motivation to do it. If one cannot even make their own bed, doing anything else will be a challenge. I saw a similarity between making one's own bed and watering a plant at a local neighborhood. After receiving months of lectures about the effects of climate change and pollution, I became very aware of the devastating problem Earth is facing right now. Becoming aware of the situation was the first step for me to actually make a difference in the community. This step can be compared to the motivation before making one's bed. One must acknowledge that the bed must be made in order to feel accomplished. Then, actually making the bed is like watering a plant. Without taking any action to save the environment, how can one change the whole world? Volunteering to water plants may seem small, but in order to do bigger things, I must bring benefits to those around me first. It gives me a sense of pride that I made a choice to do this. With this pride, I will get confidence to do even greater things. I invited my friends to continue volunteering at this event which takes place every second Sunday. With just my single choice to volunteer at this event, I am spreading my word to other people. Soon this event will multiply, and the benefits to the environment will be even greater.
With these thoughts in my mind, I worked tirelessly. I had a sharp pain in my chest, yet I ignored it, since the dry plant right in front of me was near death, while my pain in the chest would go away soon. Couple days later, I went to the hospital and was diagnosed Pneumothorax. My right lung has spontaneously collapsed over many months, and the pain I had felt on that Sunday was because strenuous activity made my lung decrease in size about 30-40%. Luckily I noticed that something was wrong with my body and was able to receive medical care. If I hadn't gone to the urgent care that day, I might have died of a possible heart attack. However, I did not regret that I watered 30 plants that day. My lung just reminded me how scary it is to not notice a problem. According to New York Times, only about 35% of American adults believe that climate change will affect them individually. This is detrimental since the United Nations estimated that population will hit nearly 10 billion in 2050, with the current population being 7.6 billion. With the amount of overpopulation and famine today, the state of the world in 2050 is beyond predictions. By the time I may have had a heart attack, it would have been to late for me to live. Before Earth is completely destroyed, humans should acknowledge the fact that the temperatures are rising quickly. When humans have the strength to do so, they should seek environmentally healthier ways of living.
To conclude, this project means hope to me. Many scientists are already saying that as long as humans are alive, it is practically impossible to bring back planet Earth to how it was before the Industrial Revolution. If many people living in the same world thought the same as me, there will be numerous plants watered. The scale is so great that soon many habitats will be restored. From watering plants, engineers can build new, more environmentally friendly energy sources. Conservation of electricity and water will become even more important. All it takes is just one person to make a small, yet difficult choice, and show their local community what even one person can make a big difference.
Date: December 31, 2017 Views: 4071 File size: 22.5kb, 271.2kb : 720 x 960
Hours Volunteered: 6
Volunteers: 2
Authors Age & Age Range of Volunteers: 16 & 47
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