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Report on Environmentally Friendly Strategies for Local Residents Essay Example

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Trees and a waste-free environment are the most essential components of urban nature. Trees and a waste-free environment prevent air, water and soil pollution besides promoting human health. This report explores ways in which local residents can become more environmentally friendly. The report confirms that tree planting and waste reduction are the best environmentally friendly strategies for local residents.

1.0 Introduction

Urban trees contribute greatly to an improved living environment for people and animals while a waste-free environment improve the quality of air that consequently reduces health issues for urban dwellers. Particularly, trees helps in trapping pollutants that are dangerous to human health. The last few decades have seen the city environment damaged by increased pollutants that have consequently increased health issues. The rise in pollutants has challenged the role of residents in promoting an environmentally friendly ecosystem. Governments have also chipped-in in finding sustainable ways of ensuring a clean environment for citizens. However, the whole responsibility of ensuring a clean environment lies with local residents who can devise and implement environmentally friendly strategies such as waste reduction and tree planting.

2.0 Environmentally Friendly Strategies for Local City Residents

2.1 Tree Planting

Trees provide a pleasant environment to people and other living things. Escobedo, Kroeger, & Wagner (2011) assert that tree improves air quality. According to Tyrvainen et al (2005), trees help in the provision of a healthy environment. In cities, trees help in reduction of traffic noise, which is detrimental to human health. The benefits of trees include social benefits, climate and physical benefits, ecological benefits and economic benefits (Tyrvaine et al 2005). Given the benefits of trees, particularly in reducing air pollution, local residents can become environmentally friendly by planting trees. Local residents can plant trees in their areas of living, in the neighbourhood and along walking paths (Tyrvaine et al 2005). According to Akbari (2002), trees help in lowering the level of green house gas emissions and reduce energy consumption. Particularly, trees reduce the demand of building air-conditioning and promote urban air quality through lowering smog. Abkari (2002) confirms that trees planted in cities such as Los Angeles prevent combustion of eighteen kilograms of carbon per year. From this perspective, urban trees play a crucial role in sequestering emission of green house gases thereby preventing global warming.

Although planting trees and maintaining them is a costly affair, the benefits linked to this activity are enormous. Akbari (2002) claims that trees provide shade that help in blocking unwanted solar radiation that strikes a building and lowers its cooling energy use. During winter, tree shade augments heating energy. During the day, trees’ shade lowers heat gain in building through lowering the temperature of the surrounding while at night trees block the flow of the heat thereby providing cooler temperatures. In a nutshell, planting trees is a good way of becoming environmentally friendly. There are numerous benefits linked to tree planting among them, energy conservation, cooling of atmosphere, and reduction in air pollution besides other social, aesthetic and economic benefits.

2.2 Waste Reduction

Reduction of waste is an environmentally friendly strategy that promotes reduction of carbon emissions besides keeping the city away from pollutants. According to Rooy (2016), there is a lot of waste that is hidden from the immediate view of the public. This waste is harmful to animals, plants and human beings. Rooy (2016) confirms that chemical and physical toxins and rubbish hold detrimental effects on plants and animals. Therefore, local residents should devise and implement effective strategies aimed at ensuring waste reduction. Waste reduction can be attained through recycling of waste products. Recycling of waste materials helps in reducing waste from incinerators and landfills. A zero waste approach also helps in conservation of natural resources and lowering of environmental pollution (Rooy 2016). Additionally, a zero waste approach promotes the health and wellbeing of residents by reducing soil, air and water pollution. Communities can come together and devise ways of garbage collection and recycling of waste. Waste reduction and recycling is an essential component in climate change and reduction of emissions of greenhouse gases.

The current consumption culture and disposal of waste is unsustainable. Waste reduction should include reducing both biodegradable and non-biodegradable waste. One of the most dangerous wastes is cigarette butt (Novotny et al 2009). This type of waste instigates water, soil and air pollution. Cigarette butt is a great environmental concern in most cities (Hosbons Bay City Council 2017). This is because cigarette butts are not biodegradable. Besides the direct health impacts linked to smoking, cigarette butts pose a grave waste disposal problem. Novotny et al (2009) asserts that cigarette butts are cannot be captured by stormwater management systems. This waste gets into waterways thereby reducing the quality of water besides harming marine life (Novotny et al 2009). Mitigating cigarette butt waste is a positive approach to a sustainable and clean environment. This does not only help in promoting a clean environment, but also helps in promoting human health and that of marine life. According Hosbons Bay City Council (2017), permanent cigarette butt bins should be established and placed in convenient places in the city. Novotny et al (2009) confirmed that the number of cigarette waste collected in 2007 in US amounted to 1,684, 183 (See Figure 1). These figures demonstrate that cigarette butts waste is a serious environmental issue. Therefore, people should develop and implement feasible ways of waste reduction to promote a clean environment.

Figure 1: Cigarettes and Cigarettes Filters Collected in the United States


Source: Novotny et al 2009

3.0 Conclusion

Several studies have revealed the importance of waste reduction and planting trees in promoting a clean and sustainable environment. It is evident that a lot of air, water and soil pollution is caused by unsustainable consumption and irresponsible waste disposal. To reduce this pollution and promote a clean environment, local residents can engage in tree planting activities and waste reduction strategies such as garbage collection. Particularly, non-biodegradable waste such as cigarette butts should be reduced at all costs given its detrimental effects to the environment.

4.0 Recommendations

  1. To promote a more sustainable and clean environment, the city council should educate the public on the benefits of clean environment. The council should motivate people to plant trees by establishing awards for the most environmentally friendly neighbourhood.
  2. The city council should establish and implement strict legal policies aimed at preventing environmental degradation and pollution. Penalties and fines for environmental littering should be huge.
  3. The city council should make available butt receptacles and garbage collection bins in convenient places to reduce littering

5.0 Reference List

Akbari, H 2002, ‘Shade trees reduce building energy use and CO2 emissions from plants’, Journal of Environmental Pollution, vol 116, pp.119-126.,

Escobedo, F, Kroeger, T & Wagner, J 2011, ‘ Urban forests and pollution mitigation: Analysing ecosystem services and disservices’, Journal of Environmental Pollution, vol 159, pp. 2078-2087.

Hossons Bay City Council (2017), ‘Butt it-bin it’, Hobsons Bay City Council. Accessed from http://www.hobsonsbay.vic.gov.au/Environment-amp-Waste/Waste-Recycling/Litter/Butt-it-Bin-it

Novotny et al 2009. ‘ Cigarettes butts and the case for an environmental policy on hazardous cigarette waste’, International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, Vol.6, pp 1691-1705.

Roy, W 2016, ‘Pre-service primary teachers’ participation in the clean up Australia day: Capturing interest about environment’, Science Educational news, vol. 65, no.3, pp.64-66.

Tyrvainen, L et al 2005, Benefits and uses of urban forests and trees.