Taking Sides Essay

Submitted By caseyfirenze
Words: 2968
Pages: 12

Sustainability has become on the most crucial achievements to societies all over the world in recent years. As the human population keeps degrading ecosystems all over the world, the commitment that conservationists, scientists, politicians, and individuals have towards preserving our fragile planet has been growing. Like any issue that the human race faces, this one comes with much controversy and conflicting approaches towards the issues at hand. Some prevalent controversies that are extremely pressing to the quality of our natural habitats everywhere are the options for energy sources and the preservation of ecosystems. For starters when it comes to the consumption of energy throughout the world, we can head in the direction of conservation of our current fossil fuels, or opt to revolutionize our ways and convert to solely renewable energy sources. Another issue is the ways to go about preserving ecosystems that humans are currently harming, seen in the management of marine life throughout our oceans, lakes and rivers. While some believe that natural reserves and protected areas are positively restoring diversity and abundance in the waters, there is another point of view that suggests that the enforcement and management of protecting the marine biodiversity has been poorly executed and more drastic measures need to be taken if there is any hope of sustaining our waters. One more heavily discussed topic is the utilization of nuclear energy as the world’s leading resource for energy. The current high demand for energy and reliability makes this option appealing, but the lack of ability of nuclear energy to provide for transportation along with the risk of pollution and high construction costs makes other green energy sources more appealing. Each point of view discussed has its pros, cons, strengths and weaknesses that are reflected throughout arguments in Robert W. Taylor’s book, “Taking Sides: Clashing Views in Sustainability,” in which he shares many experts opinions on all of these controversies. As our societies are developing the usage and demand for energy is constantly rising which causes us to either seek options for conservation or to switch the methods in which we create the energy we use. Both of these options are heavily debated when figuring out what to do to plan for future generations. Each side’s supporters have proposals on how their opinion is the most beneficial, consisting of both strong and weak components to their take on the debate. I first examined the argument that supports conservation of the energy consumption resources that we currently use in the article “The ‘Secret Benefits’ from Energy Conservation: Contribute Value Worth and 18% Improvement to Energy Savings,” written by Eric A. Woodroof, Wayne C. Turner, and Steven D. Heinz. Their examination of conserving energy came down to some very excellent points on why it would be beneficial such as the savings on utility bills when people turn off their energy consuming units when not in use, the less frequent need for repairs because products last longer when used less, and the independence from worrying about energy cost spikes. The way the authors calculated out examples and of how much lighting a building can cost each year, and compared those number to the cost if there was a 25% usage reduction was a very terse and influential way to support their argument. It got the point across that in the specific example there could be savings worth $10,993 to $30,275 a year, which is an attractive factor for the general public to save that much money. Another meaningful addition to their argument was the explanation on a greener image and how that can be beneficial to companies. I thought this was extremely interesting because with the awareness of global warming on the rise, people all over are looking for ways they can help the environment and reduce carbon footprints. When a label in a store says recycled or appliances say energy saving, it