Royal Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy / Physics, planetary atmospheres
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I am a planetary scientist and I study the atmospheres of Mars and Venus. Every time I look at the wonderful pictures of the Martian landscapes, it strikes me the complete absence of vegetation and life, as we know it. Studying the atmospheres of our neighbors, Mars and Venus, makes me realize how our own planet is unique and extremely fragile and how important it is to preserve it.
I try to reduce my ecological footprint by implementing small changes everyday in my life. I don’t own a car, I prefer to use public transport – and when the weather is nice, my bike! I drink tap water, that in Bruxelles is very good, and I always bring with me my water bottle. I subscribed a green energy contract and I buy my food at the market or in a bio shop – in the last year I had to go to a supermarket only a couple of times. I like to cook, and I always prepare my own food for lunch at work. I am trying to reduce my consummation of meat, but I am not always successful with that!
Unfortunately my ecological footprint is still very high due to my airplane journeys. I am originally from the South of Italy, where I go quite often to visit my family. On top of that I also travel quite often for work and sometimes for my holidays! In the next years, I would like to consider the possibility to travel by train whenever possible. Moreover, I find that travelling by train is much more relaxing than by plane!
Individual changes are important, but certainly not enough! We need to act together if we want to preserve planet Earth. Something that could be done at political level in the bigger cities to reduce pollution is to implement and encourage the use of public transport and bikes. Sometimes little and not expensive implementations, such as creating 30km-zones or bike lanes, would be more than enough.