By Maya Holschuh
“Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s needs, but not every man’s greed.”
― Mahatma Gandhi
The piece of legislation I decided to discuss is HB 1797-FN-A. Working with environmental regulations in the state of New Hampshire, this bill will require violators to pay an additional fifty percent charge to all pollution clean ups. The additional money would be deposited in the State General Fund. There has been concern that this bill will impact the revenue and/or expenditure of the Department of Environmental Services, but this is not the case. It will however continuously increase revenue to the general fund. Environmental pollution can come in all different forms, such as; air pollution, water pollution, soil pollution, etc. The purpose of this bill is to both control and prevent all pollutions. HB 1797-FN-A supports environmental protection and is a big step in ensuring a sustainable future for generations to come.
The Earth's climate is constantly changing for better or for worse and it stops for no one. The root cause of the rise in temperature is humans. We are emitting gases into the atmosphere that are blocking heat from escaping. We heat our homes and run our vehicles and power industries with fossil fuels. The United States gets 81% of its total energy from oil, coal, and natural gas, all of which are fossil fuels (The National Academy of Sciences, 2018). Compared to 1990 levels, the burning of fossil fuels has increased by more than 50%. Carbon dioxide levels today are the highest they have ever been in the past 800,000 years. Humans are on a path of destruction for our Earth, but the real question is are we doomed? Everyone is fully aware of all of the information stated above. We know what we are doing, we know what we have done, and we know the consequences. So why do we keep doing it? Why do humans continuously treat our Earth with such disrespect? I believe the answer is simple. We are able to mistreat it because we see ourselves as separate from it. The majority of mankind believes they are the most superior entity of the universe. They are stuck living in their own bubbles, forgetting to realize we rely on everything else to stay alive. We need nature for the simplest of things like breathing. Nature supplies us with our water, food, and shelter. Man cannot exist without nature, but nature can exist without man. People need to start living with this mindset. We need to remind ourselves of the true value nature gives us. Nature gives us, us. We are just as much nature as nature is itself. I believe the majority of decisions humans make are based off of how much we are truly intune with ourselves. There are four main realms: emotion, body, mind, and soul. We are self alienating creatures and because of this we are disconnected in all four realms. A lot of self alienation comes from the way we are brought up or simply because it is everywhere we look. Media portrays these messages to minds young and old that stick with us everywhere we go. We can’t help but feel like we are under constant pressure because of the world we have created for ourselves. Our society has gone down the wrong path and whatever society does we do too. However, with all this being said, we can make steps to go down the right path. We can change our mindset and educate ourselves of the current and detrimental environmental crisis. In order to go down the right path, we need to let the public know that their environmental injustice is not okay and they will pay. The beginning of an environmentally sustainable future starts with HB 1797-FN-A.
I support HB 1797-FN-A because I am passionate about protecting our environment. I have accepted the problem, I have accepted that humankind has cause, and I have accepted that we will bounce back from it. This bill is an incentive. We are highly intelligent individuals and we have spent years and years of our lives researching our Earth. We have the technology and we have the knowledge, so now it’s time we use it. This bill is just one of the many answers we have been looking for for so long. If this bill in itself does not give everyone hope, I am not sure what we are looking for. The crisis of climate change is the opportunity for us to further our knowledge of what we are really capable of. We must prove to not only ourselves but nature too that we are worthy of this Earth. If we can work together, hand in hand, just like the forces of nature do everyday, then we will be just fine. We must make something out of our mistakes. Learn from them. Grow from them. Thrive. We are not all that different from nature, let it lead by example. Storms pass and then comes a rainbow. Flowers wilt and then bloom again. HB 1797-FN-A is both one of the many rainbows and one of the many blooming fields of flowers.
The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (2018). “Our Energy Sources: Fossil Fuels.” What You Need To Know About Energy. Retrieved from http://needtoknow.nas.edu/energy/energy-sources/fossil-fuels/
NH Science for Citizens
Department of Environmental Studies
Keene State College
Keene, NH 03431
A project of students and faculty at Keene State College in collaboration with local NH state representatives.