Factories, power stations and motor vehicles pump large amounts of carbon dioxide and other waste gases into the air. This is the major cause of the green house effect. A lot of petrol contains lead, which is very poisonous and can cause brain damage in children. Many people now prefer using unleaded petrol. Some poisonous gases dissolve in water in the atmosphere and then fall to the earth as acid rain. Acid rain damages trees and buildings, and can kill fish in lakes and rivers. Rivers can also be polluted by industrial waste from factories and chemical fertilizers and pesticides used by farmers.
There are several groups which try to protect the environment. The most famous group is Greenpeace which makes campaigns in many countries around world. They have made campaigns against hunting whales, pollution in the North Sea, nuclear power and testing of nuclear weapons and many others issues. Greenpeace supporters organize demonstrations and they also take direct actions. Another important environmental group is Friends of the Earth. They have led campaigns against global warming, the destruction of the rain forests.
There is also a Green Party, which is a political party in Britain.
The oldest is the National Trust which was set up in 1895 to protect parks, buildings and monuments in Britain.
Royal Society for the Protection of Birds.
In the world there are a lot of animals and plants we have to protect. All these species are listed in the Red lists, which distinguish them into three groups:
Endangered are species which number falls quickly and for saving them are special measures necessary. Vulnerable are species which are still enough to survive but their number falls very quickly, too. Rare species can very easily disappear. In the Red list from 1996 there are written 5205 species which need help or protection. But this number grows every year. The giant panda is one of the most endangered animals. This beautiful mammal is very rare because of the output of wood in Chinese forests. Bamboo is the main food for pandas and it is a part of the forest which doesn‘t grow without trees above itself. It is very easy to understand: when people cut the trees, bamboo doesn‘t grow and pandas have no food. They have to move somewhere else, where bamboo still is. But there are almost no areas where pandas can live peacefully. Therefore only about 1000 pandas remain in the wild today. They live in seven separated little areas in China
Earthquake, vibrations produced inside the earth. The vibrations can range from barely noticeable to catastrophically destructive. There are six kinds of shock waves generated in the process. Two are classified as body waves and the other four are surface waves.
The general classes of earthquakes are: tectonic,vulcanic and artificially. The tectonic is the most devastating but scientists find ways to predict them.
The tectonic earthquake is situated in zones where one plate slides past another,for example at the San Andreas fault in California. These eartquakes are more frequent and stronger.In these regions they can cause great loss of life by destroing structures, buildings, bridges and they can also devastating nature.
Seismologists have devised two scales to desribe earthquakes quantitatively. One is the Richter scale-, which measures the motion of the land from the epicenter to focus.The Richter scale is open-ended.The other scale measures the intensity of shaking from 1 to 12.
The strongest earthquakes were in 1906 in San Francisco 8.3-9.2 and in 1964 the Alaskan earthquake 8.4-9.2 richter´s scale, but the biggest one was in Tokyo with the loss of 200 000 lives. It was past but now we can predict the earthquakes and it help´s people in stricken areas.
Huricanes-this name is for migratory tropical cyclones,which originate over oceans in certain regions near the equator.Huricanes in the western Pacific are known as typhoons.Huricanes consist of high-velocity winds blowing circularly around a low-presure centre,called the eye of storm.The diameter of the area affected by winds of destructive force may be 240 km.The strength of huricane is rated from 1 to 5.The mildest category 1, has got winds of 150 km/h.The strongest category,Category 5,has winds that exceed 250 km/h.Huricanes usualy move in path looking like the curve of a parabola.
Floods-when it rains or snows,some of the water is retained in the soil,some is absorbed by vegetation,some eveporates and the rest is called runoff.Floods occur when the soil and vegetation can´t absorb all the water.
Periodic floods occur naturally on many rivers.These floods are often results from heavy rain,sometimes combined with melting snows.It causes the riverbank overflow.A flood that rises and falls rapidly is called flash flood. Floods don´t only damage property and manace the live of people and animals,but have also other effects.Rapid runoff causes soil erosion. Prolonged high floods delay traffic and economic use of lands.Bridges abutments,bank lines,outfalls and other structures are damaged.Financial losses are caused by floods are comounly milions of dollars each year.