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Throughout the ages, pandemics have changed the behaviour of people and therefore the course of history. The Covid-19 pandemic also forced us to change our way of living: we now wear masks, keep a social distance and work online, for instance.
And yet it seems as if the slow assassin, pollution, and its equally sneaky spawn, plastic pollution, do not trigger the same sense of urgency in humankind.
Despite all the evidence of the threat to not only mankind but to all life on Earth, we continue to use single-use plastic items such as bags, straws and food packaging that end up in our rivers and oceans. Our factories and cars keep on spewing dangerous gasses into our atmosphere.
Two of the articles in this edition focus on pollution. In “Frog Lady wins a ‘Green Oscar’” we learn that water pollution is one of the biggest threats to the world’s amphibians. In “Protecting our oceans is Veronica’s passion” we read that plastic pollution is a huge threat to our oceans and all the creatures that inhabit these vast water masses.
We have to face the facts: our planet is terminally ill and we have to change our behaviour to prevent its slow death. We need to nurse Earth back to health.
For the sake of our children and their children, we must confront this environmental pandemic with the same fervour that we currently show in the fight against Covid-19.
Nelia and the
NWU & U team
Willie du Plessis
Clairwyn van der Merwe
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The NWU & U is produced and published in English and Afrikaans by the Corporate Communication department of the NWU.
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