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biodiversity 

 By biodiversity we mean the variety of life on Earth and the interaction among its creatures. From a different viewpoint, it may also be defined as the “knowledge” accumulated during the many million years of evolution that makes living organisms capable of adapting to the ever-changing environmental influences. Biodiversity is the greatest in the tropical rainforests near the equator (which host two-thirds of all known species), and decreases over distance to the poles. We may describe it with the number of species present, their incidence and its time and spatial patterns. 

Biodiversity is threatened by many factors: apart from natural causes such as ice ages, continental collisions, volcanic eruptions or the destructive power of meteorites, the most consequential one is human activity. The destruction of habitat, environmental pollution, the increasing human population, poaching and the spread of invasive species all contribute to the immense decrease of biodiversity, leading to a possible ecological catastrophe in the future. 

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zero waste

Zero waste is a self-imposed activity that aims at minimising waste production through the individual’s change of purchasing and consumption habits. As a result, producing waste  especially non-reusable waste  should be avoided to ease the burdens of recycling. The latter is essential, since the resources required for recycling are tremendous – it is easier to avoid waste generation in the first place. 

Conscious consuming reconsiders the need of purchasing a certain product. Overcoming the effects of advertising or the joy of gaining something is challenging; however, current overproduction causes ecological problems, and environmental stress can be decreased through moderate consumption. Package free shops aim at helping this problem, and besides, reusable textile bags and boxes can replace disposable, single-use ones. There is no need to throw away items we already own  numerous organisations and forums help us pass on or repurpose them. Raw kitchen waste may also be of use after composting. Another important aspect of the zero waste approach is breaking the habit of using single-use, disposable products and switching to their reusable versions. Examples include textile bags (mentioned earlier), textile handkerchiefs, napkins and refillable water bottles instead of plastic ones. 

sustainability, voluntary simplicity, climate crisis, ecological crisis, anti-consumerism, critique of consumerism 

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civil disobedience

The concept of civil disobedience was concieved by American writer Henry David Thoreau (18171862). According to him, it is the individual’s right and duty to resist – if a government deviates morally, and alters laws in its own favour or becomes socially unjust –, and to guide the way using non-violent tools, in case the authority does not take acts of legal protest (such as petitions and legal procedures) into account. 

Indian politician Mahatma Gandhi (18691948) shared similar thoughts, referring to passive resistance as our innate right. The tools of civil disobedience  such as unauthorised protests, sit-down strikes, roadblocks, squatting buildings and areas, or disruption of events at administrative or governmental institutions  are also used by numerous activist groups that aim at lessening the ecological crisis. These groups include: Extinction Rebellion, Greenpeace, Fridays for Future and the Sunrise Movement among others.