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The Lockdown Has Slowed Down Our Impact on the Environment But It’s Still Not Enough

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A recent study has shown that the policies taken by governments across the world to fight the COVID-19 pandemic have had an impact on the environment in a positive way. Carbon emissions have dropped by high rates compared to previous years, which is definitely a good thing.

However, things are not as good as some of us might want to see them because this pandemic has also shown us that we need to rethink the way our economy works and make rapid changes in order to be able to preserve the environment.

If you are looking online at the model DP103L from Ryobi, then you are already part of the shift that started in terms of the way people shop during a crisis.

Photo by ETA+ on Unsplash

A Few Numbers

The study has shown that, at their peak, the emissions in various countries dropped by impressive figures of 26%, on average. This is a significant drop, given that airplanes have reduced the number of flights across the world and many people have stayed inside for extended periods, which means that traffic was also significantly reduced.

On the other hand, it’s important to see that even with a 26% reduction at the peak of the lockdown, there was still a level of emissions as high as 74%, so simply changing the way we move around and parts of various industries is not going to be enough to bring our impact on the environment close to zero.

According to estimates, the annual drop in emissions will be somewhere around 7% if some restrictions remain in place worldwide until the end of the year, while if these are lifted during June 2020, the annual emissions drop will be around 4%.

This means that this drop and the benefits the environment gained in the process are only going to be temporary.

It’s only normal for people to want to go back to normal activity, and the faster we do this and the economy starts working again, the more the environment will be hurt.

On the other hand, it’s important to look at this pandemic as a good moment to realize that we need to rethink the way our society works as a whole.

Why We Need to Cut Emissions

The 4% drop in emissions that we could have until the end of the year is still the biggest reduction since World War II, so it’s definitely a positive impact from this point of view. Emissions have been rising by 1% every year for a very long time.

On the other hand, if the Paris agreement is to be met, then by mid-century, the emissions should be close to zero. As this pandemic has shown us, it’s going to take a lot more than just a change in our cars and airplanes to make this happen.

Otherwise, the result would be global heating reaching levels that can no longer be contained. Of course, changing the way we travel, work, commute and simply driving less can definitely help in preventing this from happening.

But it’s still important to see that the lockdown measures left a very significant part of emissions intact.

Opportunities

It’s clear that much bigger changes and shifts are necessary, especially when it comes to the ways in which people use and produce energy. Structural changes within both the industry and the economy are necessary, and we can take this opportunity to start putting them in place as quickly as possible.

The COVID-19 pandemic has shown us what can be achieved and what needs to be still worked on, thus providing a much clearer image of our impact on the environment, especially when it comes to sources of emissions.

The good part is that people have also had a chance to see blue skies for the first time in a while, so this can also contribute to a significant shift toward a more sustainable lifestyle.

In the end, this is what we should all strive for if we want to be healthy, as changes in the environment are no longer about future generations, but about people living and working today across the world.

 
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