Skip to main content
Home The Earth Needs Our Help

The Earth Needs Our Help

Thursday, January 25, 2018

There are many problems in our world today, but we’re not the only ones suffering. There are several environmental problems such as global warming, pollution, natural resource depletion, overpopulation, and climate change that affect animals and natural resources. A search for solutions is always being done, but we could easily change our lifestyle to be more environmentally friendly.

To reduce the amount of pollution produced, we could be cautious of our actions and think about the impact of our actions. For example, use a reusable water bottle, go paperless, recycle, turn off the lights and tap when not being used, and cook your meals instead of dining out.

PBA has taken energy efficiency into consideration and took action, starting with the new building.

“The lights, for example, are LED, all of them in the school so they consume only a small amount of electricity compared to regular incandescent bulbs,” said head of school Josh Hernandez Morse.

The lights in every classroom automatically turn on when someone enters and turn off once they leave. Photovoltaic panels are expected to be installed soon; air conditioning is programed to only run during school hours; and hallways and the commons, where the students spend their free time, is cooled by tradewinds.

PBA seniors restoring Heʻeia Fishpond during a class fieldtrip (photo by Shala McKee).

“In terms of landscaping we use a drip irrigation system rather than a pop-up sprinkler system which utilizes a lot less water,” Hernandez Morse added.

Recycling is a popular option in many schools and organizations. PBA started a recycling program a few years ago, but it proved unsuccessful, and questions abound on campus about how effective it would be to restart the program. 

“If they put them on a barge and they ship them to the mainland, how energy efficient is that?” asked Hernandez Morse.

Science teacher Van Velasco, on the other hand, thinks that the act of being more conscious of how our actions affect the planet is important in and of itself.

“It’s a mindset,” he said. “You have to train your mind to be more environmentally focused and if you let go recycling, you’re letting go of a little bit of environmental focus.

The school did, however, complete a massive donation campaign during the move into the new building, which Velasco praised.

“We donated a lot of books instead of throwing them away, gave away a lot of furniture to HMS and the Betsuin temple versus just dumping it,” he said.

We share this world with other beings and resources are needed for our survival, but what happens when we run out of resources?

“Limited resources cause conflict, if people don’t have access to their resources then they feel threatened,” Velasco said.

Students share similar feelings about how we should treat nature. Junior Kaci Yamato believes that once we achieve awareness, then we can work together to solve the environmental problems we are facing today.

“Everything needs to be in harmony with each other,” Yamato said. “For us, we need to take care of the environment and the environment in return will take care of us.”

Every human coexists with nature, but we may not do or make the greatest decisions which hurt the environment. The damage will later affect us in a negative way, which is why we’re struggling to find solutions.

If the problem can’t be stopped, the destruction could be prolonged by making decisions that are environmentally friendly.

“If we don’t realize our connection to the environment,” Yamato said, “then we’ll never be in harmony.”