Environmental Stewardship Corner

For eight days this January, a group of students and I experienced the rain forest, cloud forest and volcanic regions of Costa Rica. This small country covers only 0.03% of the earth's surface, and holds more than 5% of all life forms. The effects of global warming are dramatic in this country. Species are moving higher in elevation and ecosystems are changing. Plant and animal species are becoming rarer and possibly extinct. Consequently, it is not surprising that Costa Rica has lofty sustainability aspirations, wanting to be the first developing country to become carbon neutral, i.e., have zero net output of carbon dioxide by 2021. Costa Rica is moving toward achieving that goal by having 95% of its electrical energy from renewable sources and protecting its rain forests. One person can make a difference. I strongly encourage you to visit the website: http://www.epa.gov/sustainability/ to see what you can do to move the U.S. toward sustainability. Don’t forget the 3 R’s: Reduce, Recycle and Reuse.

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