June 28, 2015 | Sunday

Guest Blog: Think globally … Act locally from Labinot Salihu

Around the world climate changes are perceived as global issues on which the citizen has little impact, while in fact the role of each citizen is extraordinarily important.
Climate changes occur due to the greenhouse effect, which is caused as a result of the energy we consume by using electricity or driving vehicles. Other factors that affect the climate changes are processes that in practice make our life easier and which in long term cause great damages. The negative effect we cause can be improved through small steps.
Measures to prevent the greenhouse effect are very simple and ask for little effort. With little attention, each of us can assist in changing the World’s fate for better. It is sufficient only if you change the bulbs that you use in your home or pay attention to the gas that your vehicle releases, and things will get better.

At home…
1. Replace conventional bulbs with the ones that save electricity, thus saving your pocket as well as the life of the planet. According to some studies, if each American house did this, the greenhouse effect would be limited to the same extent as getting 10 Million vehicles out of service.
2. Insulate your home! If you choose to change your windows, replace them with the ones that insulate better and if possible change doors as well. Make sure to have a well-insulated house from the start, in order to be able to save energy for heating later and as a result have a safer planet.
3. Reduce, reuse and recycle. The rule of R’s is worth millions. It is difficult for us to apply it because we have little or no opportunity to recycle. However, we can take precautionary measures in order not to come to the recycling option. Instead of using plastic bags, we can use cloth bags, and instead of using plastic bottles, we can use glass ones.
4. Use water wisely, because it is very easy saving it. Generating drinkable water as a product requires a lot of work and a lot of energy.
In the street…
1. Every time you go for shopping equipment/tools, do not be beguiled by low prices and buy the ones that are convenient for the moment. Maybe environmentally friendly equipment cost more at the start, however they last longer and do not need to be repaired, which justifies their price. In addition, they save the environment and this is really valuable for us and for the future of our generations.
2. Take care of your vehicle. A well maintained vehicle saves the environment more than you could think.
3. Use public transportation.
4. Use recycling oils if you can. In our country this is difficult, but you are encouraged to do it if possible.
At school…
1. Bringscience to life! If you learn about environment issues at school, do not keep them only on paper. Do not learn it by heart only for assessment tests; instead make sure to apply them in practice. And most importantly, discuss it with your friends and convey the messages to as many other people as possible.
2. If you are a high school student and you organize roundtables, debates, campaigns or other forms of communication, lobby publicly on this issue as well. Rest assured that the impact of the word of mouth is extraordinary and the power of your activity can change many things.
Author is a civic activist and environmentalist