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انشاالله

 

+ نوشته شده در  دوشنبه شانزدهم آذر 1388ساعت 8:59  توسط زهرا احمدی  | 

This is the VOA Special English ENVIRONMENT REPORT

This is the VOA Special English ENVIRONMENT REPORT.

A report by the United Nations Environment Program says Africa faces severe environmental problems unless urgent action is taken. It says Africa faces increases in air and water pollution, land destruction, water shortages and wildlife losses.

The report involved hundreds of experts. The U-N Environment Program says it is the most complete study of Africa’s environment ever produced.

During the past thirty years, many things have harmed Africa’s environment. They include growing populations, wars, rising national debt, natural disasters and disease. Experts say there will be many new threats during the next thirty years. They include climate change, the spread of non-native plants and animals, uncontrolled expansion of cities and pollution from cars and industry.

Africa’s people and economies depend on agriculture. Records show that yearly rainfall has been decreasing since nineteen-sixty-eight. Experts say this may be a result of the warming climate caused by man-made carbon-dioxide gas in the atmosphere. They say Africa could suffer greatly from the effects of global warming because of its dependence on agriculture.

Experts also say natural disasters in Africa have become more common and more severe. A lack of rain in some areas and floods in other areas are harming the land and has led to the displacement of people and wildlife.

Air pollution from industries and from old cars is another serious problem. The continent’s wildlife is threatened by the destruction of forests, hunting, the presence of non-native species, and a lack of enforcement of protection laws.

Many African countries are beginning to deal with some of these environmental problems. But experts say more efforts are needed by African countries and other countries. They say more could be done to reduce Africa’s debt, increase aid and help give local communities more power. They say countries need to help enforce environmental agreements, produce clean technologies and open international markets to African goods and services.

The head of the U-N Environmental Program says the report will be important for nations meeting at the World Summit on Sustainable Development. That meeting opens at the end of this month in Johannesburg, South Africa.

This VOA Special English ENVIRONMENT REPORT was written by Cynthia Kirk

+ نوشته شده در  دوشنبه شانزدهم آذر 1388ساعت 8:44  توسط زهرا احمدی  | 

This is the VOA Special English ENVIRONMENT REPORT

This is the VOA Special English ENVIRONMENT REPORT.

Officials in Chicago, Illinois, are hoping to help the environment by planting gardens on the tops of buildings. They say plants and trees have the ability to clean the air and decrease the temperature. They say rooftop gardens can keep buildings cooler, save energy and extend the useful life of a roof.

Almost half of the streets, parking areas for cars, and buildings in Chicago have dark-colored surfaces. More than sixty percent of Chicago’s rooftops are dark in color. During the summer, dark-colored surfaces take in and trap heat from the sun. This causes the temperature to rise higher in the city than in surrounding areas.

This is known as the urban heat island effect. It is felt most in the summer when temperatures are already high. More energy is needed to cool buildings as a result of the temperature increase. The heat island effect also increases air pollution.

Not all cities experience the heat island effect. It depends on the weather and the condition of streets, buildings and other man-made structures. It also depends on the number of natural areas with plants and trees, such as parks and gardens. In addition to Chicago, several North American cities experience the heat island effect. They include Atlanta, Georgia; Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and Toronto, Canada.

The city of Chicago’s Department of Environment wants building owners to do what they can to reduce the heat island effect. City officials say one way to do this is by planting gardens on the roofs of buildings. One example is the rooftop garden on Chicago’s City Hall. Workers planted trees and other plants on the roof. They chose native plants that need less water. Many kinds of insects and birds have made their homes in the rooftop garden. Workers also replaced surfaces with light-colored materials. They say this has helped reduce energy use inside the building to keep the building cooler.

Officials say the Chicago City Hall rooftop garden also helps prevent rainwater from overflowing in the streets. The water is taken in by the plants, trees and soil. Officials say the overflow of rainwater would be reduced if enough buildings in the city had rooftop gardens.

This VOA Special English ENVIRONMENT REPORT was written by Cynthia Kirk.

+ نوشته شده در  دوشنبه شانزدهم آذر 1388ساعت 8:38  توسط زهرا احمدی  |