Letter to the editor: An opportunity for us to restrict our harm to the environment
Garden City, New York
As I watch outside my window in suburban Long Island, there is a constant stream of unfamiliar people walking or biking around my block. Even more strange, noisy car traffic has virtually been eradicated. Is coronavirus the sole cause of this drastic change?
The article “Conservation center assesses the impact of COVID-19 on the environment,” published April 12 by Taylor Sienkiewicz, shows how this phenomenon is not only occurring in New York. The article discusses the negative and positive impacts of COVID-19 on the local environment in Colorado. This article mentions how plastic bags are being used more frequently due to suspicion of transmission through reusable bags. However, I believe this short-term harm has been outweighed by the positive environmental effects of social distancing.
The mentioned article explains how air quality has improved and noise pollution has been reduced due to social distancing. The coronavirus has served as a wake-up call for the public, as we are being shown how the absence of our daily activities has benefited the environment. Therefore, once social distancing eventually comes to an end, state governors such as Andrew Cuomo or Jared Polis can control which activities can return to normal. This serves as an opportunity for us to restrict our harm to the environment going forward. Now that people are more used to being sustainable, it may be easier to open their minds to crucial environmental policy changes.
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