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Jessica Pachuca
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These papers had the common theme of minority and low-income individuals being more exposed to pollution. In particular, the first paper discussed the impact redlining has on segregating those demographics from wealthier and whiter households. The others elaborated on how Covid-19 has exacerbated these already present health issues. While they were certainly interesting reads, they, unfortunately, weren't surprising to hear. There are several common discussions on how low-income and minority people are facing issues in education, the labor market, incarceration, wealth accumulation, abuse, and overall health, among various other topics. In theme with the video shown today, at what point are we going to act on it? In my own experiences, as a low-income Hispanic in Houston and having taken several poverty-related courses, it is frustrating to have no one listen. Or at the very least, having people in control not making changes for situations that don't directly affect them. It is sometimes discouraging to read pieces explaining clear correlations, but still not have individuals believe them. What's it going to take? How can we increase awareness and connection between people, who as seen in the first article, are often separated from one another?
Toggle Commented Mar 29, 2022 on Last Post for the Semester at Jolly Green General
It was particularly interesting reading the lack of negative effects of climate change policy on older individuals. I had previously considered, and we've mentioned in class, the benefit of lower-income households. It was emphasized throughout the paper and refreshing to hear, especially with poorer individuals often receiving the bad end of the stick with policies. However, older individuals don't come up often, so it was interesting reading the results. The reasoning the article gave for this was the automatic indexing of the Social Security program to inflation. If this provided a benefit, how would wages play a role? Would accurately adjusting real wages as done with SS, reduce the burden of the middle-class? By how much would it reduce it, if at all? Would it lead to more negative effects in the long or short run? I'd also be interested in seeing if this would change anything among age groups, as the younger ones were more negatively affected.
Toggle Commented Mar 22, 2022 on Paper for Thursday at Jolly Green General
After reading the papers, it is clear that there are various potential health impacts of pollution on a wide variety of people and ages. It was interesting to read about the effects on different groups for short and long-term impacts. Why is there limited worry for the effects of air pollution as our world currently stands? It was mentioned in class today that the effects of climate change seem distant to our current population. If there are present impacts, why is that the case? How can we effectively share this information with the wider population without them shutting down? It is unfortunate that this issue is not high enough on the list of priorities for many individuals. Aside from this, an additional aspect I found interesting was from the first article. The reading states that there is a larger effect of pollution for those who are less educated. Is this due to a correlation between low-income and low-quality neighborhoods? For instance, how does the air quality compare between low and high-income neighborhoods? I'd imagine there are large differences, but how would those differences differ in countries, states, and cities? In what ways does the lack of socioeconomic mobility for high-poverty families play a role? How can we relieve these issues? This reminds me of the idea that those least responsible or least able to adapt to environmental issues are the ones most impacted. If the impact of pollution was more evenly distributed, would there be more care for these issues? Could this extend to other inequalities in our nation?
Toggle Commented Mar 15, 2022 on Papers for Thursday at Jolly Green General
I thought the Fueling Our Future article was interesting in that it provided a solution by offering an alternative method to present energy use. Rather than suggest a transition to a completely new alternative, there was a discussion of fixing a current method. Though, there was an emphasis on using multiple types. However, I do wonder to what extent this would make addressing climate change more politically feasible? In the article it brought an example of real visible changes in our world, such as the melting of glaciers. In addition, there are the recent floods in Lismore, in which some people have stated is a result of climate change. It is frustrating to see real impacts of climate change with little being done to help the issue. Are we waiting until it's too late? There doesn't seem to be a care for many social issues unless people are directly affected. Are people hesitant towards change because they would rather stick to traditional methods? If so, would the adaptation of technology to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from coal align more with politicians who are hesitant? To what extent? The other article, Confronting the Climate-Energy Change, suggested towards the end, a need for more efficient adaptations. The examples given included transportation, technology and non-fossil energy alternatives. These are heavily emphasized by environmentalists already, and while there has been some change, there has not been enough. How can we make these necessary changes more attractive towards individuals preferring more traditional methods, or perhaps, those who are afraid of change?
Toggle Commented Mar 8, 2022 on Papers for Thursday at Jolly Green General
I thought this article was interesting and emphasized the need for change in systems now. One of the parts I found intriguing was how it connected various environmental issues together. Prior to this, we had been reading about matters individually, and personally, I hadn't thoughtfully considered how they intertwined. In the chapter, it brought up the importance of trees in water systems and how deforestation leads to negative effects. In the article, it mentioned the role of climate change in fisheries. It almost seems as though we need to resolve large environmental issues in order to fully tackle others, which can make it overwhelming in wondering where to begin. Aside from this, but potentially related, why aren't policymakers focused on the long run? Clearly, the RBFM and MPA systems can collectively provide benefits for fisheries and the economy long term. While the article did mention hesitation because of unevenly distributed costs/rights, they also said this issue could be minimized in the allocation stage. So why is it that these systems aren't widely adopted? Do other potential negative impacts supersede the benefits? Is this a matter of politics? Is the investment not worth the long term?
Toggle Commented Feb 8, 2022 on Paper for Thursday at Jolly Green General
The paper discussing the influence China has on the Brazilian Amazon was interesting in that it gave insight into different priorities. The author of the paper had a clear stance against deforestation. However, individuals trying to economically profit in Brazil have other priorities. Like the other chapters we've read suggested, we need economic incentives or people will act in their own self-interest. It is its own set of challenges to act upon environmental issues within the United States. But, how does that differ internationally? Clearly, environmental issues don't just affect the country that's exerting it, but they can also affect the rest of the world. If protection against deforestation was a priority in our country, would it be our responsibility to provide economic incentives among other countries? Is that politically feasible? How can we manage to prioritize environmental preservation globally, when there are a variety of views, ideologies, and cultures?
Toggle Commented Feb 2, 2022 on Reading for Thursday at Jolly Green General
Both of these pieces do great at highlighting the importance of the preservation of ecosystems economically. Entire industries could be disrupted if we don't protect them. In the case of Belize, respondents were willing to pay more than I expected. However, because the survey provided some context of the state of PACT/MPA, I wonder how that impacted the results. I'd imagine that given some background knowledge, individuals would be more inclined to pay higher amounts. It relates to the idea of the three I's and the impact "ignorance" has. If there were more efficient systems in place to educate people on environmental goals/consequences as it relates to them, would there be more support? Or would educating not suffice, as it is just a matter of ideology?
Toggle Commented Jan 25, 2022 on Readings for Thursday at Jolly Green General
Both of these pieces, while optimistic in concept, left me in doubt of our country's future decisions. It is clear that preservation or sustainability can at the very least be improved. While there have been some initiatives in environmentally improving, it isn't as nearly effective as it could be. These articles reminded me about how politics can be damaging in serious issues. While different, it is not far from the problems of our education system. We often have politicians making decisions about issues they aren't fully knowledgeable in. In education, it could mean developing a curriculum that is biased based on the party of those in power. While in the case of environmental issues, it could mean making decisions that damage our planet. In addition, the voters themselves often lack knowledge about issues that don't align with their party. At what point do we prohibit politics from influencing topics that could permanently harm our society?
Toggle Commented Jan 19, 2022 on Readings for Thursday at Jolly Green General
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Jan 18, 2022