The word engineer is derived from the Latin words ingeniare ("to contrive, devise") and ingenium ("cleverness")
The inaugural Earth Day gathered 20 million Americans together on April 22, 1970 to have a serious discussion about the declining health of the planet. Today, over 200 million people in 141 countries are taking part in this momentous day. Their aim is to bring awareness and discuss solutions about how we can keep our Earth in the best shape possible. This year's theme is about ending plastic pollution. According to theEarthday.org website, plastics are doing things like, "poisoning and injuring marine life to disrupting human hormones, from littering our beaches and landscapes to clogging our waste streams and landfills, the exponential growth of plastics is now threatening the survival of our planet."
The preservation of the Earth's environment is important for the planet's survival for future generations to live, thrive and enjoy. Environmental engineersuse engineering skills and principles of biology, chemistry and soil science to improve things like, water and air pollution, recycling, reusing, and waste disposal. Some of the ways that they are succeeding at this is by improving clean water and sanitation, reducing toxic gas emissions and designing structures that can help reduce heating and cooling costs.
What about Robots?
Scientist and engineers are also using robots to help in the fight to make our planet a little greener. Though some of these are prototypes, it is the start of something that our children will hopefully be able to improve upon in the very near future.
Recycling robots: Dustbot is a mobile recycling robot that picks up trash at people's homes and brings it a recycling facility.
Telepresence robots: These robots have the ability to get away from annoying and impersonal conference calls and make you feel that you are actually in the room! Depending on how much money you want to spend, you can even have the robot designed to look just like you!
Harvesting robots: These robots are designed to help in the agricultural field. The idea is to help reduce energy and fuel consumption. Some of these machines are designed to till land, plant seeds and even prune grapes!
Personal mobility vehicles.: These vehicles are designed to take a person longer than a few blocks. You can make a trip to the grocery store or to your favorite coffee shop.
To learn more about these robots, including videos, check out the Spectrum.ieee.
It is so important that we teach our children to be conscious about how we live everyday. Here are four simple principles that you can teach your children that will benefit themselves and the planet:
Recycling: I know some may think that this is a practice that many people do everyday, but in reality that are still many communities that do not recycle.
Conservation: This is a simple as turning off a light or fan when leaving the room or turning the water off when brushing your teeth or washing your hands.
Walking or biking: Instead of driving a car to get to wherever you're going, walk or ride your bicycle to the park or friend's house.
Reusing: Clean out and keep glass jars for uses such as storage containers or drinking glasses
Go to the Earth911website to find out more ways to teach your children about Earth Day!