However, today the whole world, particularly the developing countries, faces a near-crisis situation – both economic and environmental. The second argues strongly that all this nonsense about preserving the tiger and aesthetic beauty of green belts is diverting the attention from the problems of the poor and that environment has nothing to do with trying to give a better deal to the large and ever-growing population responsible for environmental crisis, maintaining that there is too little of everything except people.
The three different views illustrate how little we know of ecosystem and ecobalance. The first argument is that environmental concerns are the business of rich countries, which cause most of the pollution.
Another serious environmental and ecological problem has arisen from large-scale deforestation, which, in turn, has led to increased floods, soil erosion, silting of rivers and eventually desertification.
This reckless operation, especially in the Third World, leads to deforestation to the extent of 11 million hectares every year.
In the long run such a development can go on only at the cost of enormous human suffering, increased poverty and oppression.
On a world, scale environmental awareness often finds expression at the Conferences of Human Environment organized by the United Nations Environment Programmes.
One, the increasing concentration of carbon dioxide in atmosphere due to large scale burning of fossil fuels, coal and petroleum, in modern industry and transport leading to a “greenhouse effect”.
The other threat arises from aircraft exhausts and the chlorofluorocarbons (CFC) used in aerosol sprays and refrigeration causing ozone layer depletion.
In the main, the environmental problem is three-dimensional: (i) Environmental pollution, (ii) Ecological decay or destruction, and (iii) Resource depletion. The greatest pollutant or “environmental killer” today is radioactive fallout from nuclear testing, nuclear plants and the long-term storage of nuclear materials, disposal of nuclear wastes and occasional nuclear accidents.
The other types of air pollution have also been a matter of international concern.