The Bright Side of COVID-19

Harper Frye, Staff Writer

The numerous negatives of COVID-19 overshadowed the significant importance of the fiftieth anniversary of Earth day. The positive environmental impacts, such as air quality improvement and water clarity, generated by the vast modifications in society, has fabricated a much healthier Earth. COVID-19 and the shelter-in-place demands have caused positive modifications in society that can be attributed to ground breaking changes within our environment. 

COVID-19 has forced us into our homes, isolated from one another. It has caused us to slow down our lives to almost a complete halt. The world has been put on pause, yet we are still concentrated on less dire affairs. What society really needs to be focused on with this additive time is appreciating what this unfortunate circumstance has brought to the table. There is no logic or reason in just sitting in your house day in day out, and worrying about conditions that are simply out of your control. Look out the window and appreciate the bigger things in life, like our Earth that is slowly withering away. A provocative result of this pandemic can be positive if we shift our stance on the matter completely.

Knowing our self-indulgent society, we will unlock our doors and proceed with our lives like this sickness was just a hiccup in the road to our world’s happily ever after.  Society will speak of how we underwent this horrific pandemic, but soon we will be back on track, and once again, dive straight into another world-wide problem that might just kill us all this time. This may be a setback for our economy, but it has been a monumental step forward for our environment. 

We have seen what just a few months of isolation can do for our home. Air pollution has decreased by remarkable amounts in places like India and China, where the air quality index was once deemed too high to live in. Bodies of water that were usually suffocated by oil and trash are now clearing out, allowing species that were once driven out by unhealthy conditions to suddenly reappear. Safari sights are seeing more and more animals from the lack of tourist visits and hunters. Although these are important steps to a healthier future, they are temporary and some of the issues caused by society are more permanent.

The melting of the Arctic is a key example of an irreversible, and more permanent situation, that humans have caused over time. The Arctic is home to over 230,000 species, all of which are severely affected by the melting of polar ice and the significant increase of temperature in the Arctic Ocean. Unfortunately, the positive impacts of shelter-in-place demands will not affect the Arctic as crucially.

Hopefully people will realize now, more than ever, that we need to start making colossal changes. That sounds like a lot of effort but “colossal changes” just means that everyone needs to contribute, big or small. And this goes for everyone, including myself. I know that I do not need to take thirty minute showers, nor use plastic straws with my Starbucks drink. Little alterations, by everyday people, can have long lasting effects. Especially if seven and a half billion people can make those minor changes. What can you do?