What do the buildings we live in, the cups we drink from, and the computers we use at work have in common? The answer is yes, and that is SAND. This is a key ingredient we see everywhere in modern life.
But the scary thing is that almost no one knows how much sand the earth has left and how much it can still dig.
According to a recent review in the British journal Nature, sand and gravel are now being extracted faster than they can recover naturally. The cause of this unsustainable excavation is oversight. Reports from the world wide fund for nature (WWF) and the UN environment programme (UNEP) have "left a big footprint in the sand".
Sustainability is critical
As systems are built and rules are made, the nature article offers several Suggestions, most important of which is to identify and identify sustainable sources of sand.
Greenland, for example, is replenishing its coastline with sand as the ice sheet recedes. The United Nations needs to develop a plan similar to sustainable forest management. New passive sand sources that do not affect the river should also be sought to reduce the ecological impact.
The second is alternative, where local and national governments and planning authorities should encourage the use of alternatives to sand, such as gravel, industrial slag, recycled plastics and so on. At the same time, the base materials should be recycled as much as possible.
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