Friday, January 27, 2012

The next generation Betty: Welcome these tips from local teenager!

Teresa approached me several months ago wanting to help serve the community Betty-style so I suggested some guest blogs. Here's the first installment. Enjoy and thanks for making a difference, Teresa!

Hi! My name is Teresa and I am a 9th grader at Albemarle High School. I am interested in environmental issues because I am very concerned about the impact that global warming will have on our future. I’m volunteering with Better World Betty because I would love to help make people more aware that global warming is a problem and that we need to reduce our carbon footprint.

I recently read an article ( that stated that the temperature on the Earth is higher than it has been for the past 400 years! In the past century, the Earth’s temperature has risen 1 degree Fahrenheit. However, the rate of temperature increase will accelerate due to retreating glaciers. Ice reflects the sun, so as more glaciers melt, the Earth will absorb more heat.

Most people do not think a 1 degree rise in temperature is much at all (I definitely did not), but it turns out that even small changes in temperature can have a huge impact on Earth. A predicted 5 to 8 degree temperature rise in the next 100 years could cause sea levels to rise half a meter, put some island nations underwater, and wreak havoc in many areas of the world.

But I think the most surprising fact in the article is that 6 to 10 degrees is the difference between today and the deepest ice age!

Most of the recent increase in temperature is caused by human activity, so we definitely need to make it a priority to take action now to slow down global warming.

Here are a few small things my family does to reduce our carbon footprint:

1. We unplug electronics when not in use. Leaving items like laptops, cable boxes, and game units plugged in all the time can waste a lot of energy.
2. We take short showers.
3. We bring our own reusable bags when we grocery shop and our own reusable containers for restaurant leftovers.
4. With the holidays approaching, we will avoid excessive use of wrapping paper by using reusable gift bags, recycled wrapping paper or even the comics from the newspaper.
5. We go to the Better World Betty website for more recipes for green living!

Hopes this helps!

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