Many people define the earth as the world that we live in. In scientific and academic definitions, the earth is a planet that is thirds away from the sun. Earth is the only planet that is known to sustain life. The earth has a lot that it offers its inhabitants due to its numerous resources. Due to these benefits, is important to take care of this planet that we live in for our future generations.
Origin of the word ‘earth’
The word earth came from both German and English. Since the English language originated from German some words have German origins with one of them being Earth. It comes from the German word ‘erde’ which is a word that means ground.
However, the real creator of the name is not known. Unlike the other planets that were named after gods and goddesses of the Roman and Greek, Earth was not.
Origin of life on earth
There are many conflicting scientific opinions about the origin of life on earth. All scientists however agree that life began form a very small form that scientists believe happened over 3900 million years ago. The different theories that explain the origin of life in earth include;
- Some scientists believe that life on earth started as a result of an electric spark. Lightning generated the electric spark that enabled life. This is because electricity produces amino acids and sugars which are the main creators of life.
- Another scientist also believes that life on earth started as a result of a combination of clay and molecules of life.
- There is also the suggestion that life could have begun at the bottom of the sea. It suggests that life originated from vents in the deep sea that released hydrogen molecules that combined to form life.
- There is also the creation theory where different religions believe that a supreme being created the earth and all that is in it.
Land vs. water on earth
When it comes to the percentage of water or land on earth, water holds the highest percentage as the earth’s surface is made up of 70% water and about 30% land. However, as much as this is the case, the earth is made up of rocks and hence the weight of land is high with water only making up 0.5% of the total weight of the earth. The reasons as to why water makes up 70% of the earth’s surface is that is a liquid that spreads to cover the most part of the rocky planet.
Physical characteristics of the earth
- One of the physical characteristics of the planet earth is that it is spherical in shape. It has the same shape as the moon and the sun.
- When it comes to size, the earth has a diameter of 12,756 kilometers at the equator whereas it has a circumference of 40,075 kilometers at the equator.
- In terms of composition, the earth is made up of land, water and the atmospheric portion that contain gases.
- It terms if force fields, the earth mainly has two force fields that include magnetism and gravity.
- The earth has a magnetic field that is found in the North Pole and in the South Pole.
Earth’s natural resources
- Water is the most important natural resource on earth. This is a resource that has many benefits besides helping in sustaining life.
- Minerals are also resources that can be found in different parts of the planet earth. These minerals include gold, oil, coal, diamonds, titanium, etc.
- Air is also a natural resource that is used to support life and enable other processes.
- Soil is also a natural resource that is used to grow plants that are sources of food and it is also a resource upon which people build shelters.
- Wind is a natural resource that can provide wind energy.
- Forests are also natural resources that provide various benefits ranging from controlling climate change to being habitats for some animals.
Environmental risks to planet earth
- Climate change is an environmental risk that is facing the planet. This is because climate change is causing harsh weather conditions that lead to natural disasters like floods, droughts and hurricanes.
- The extinction of species is also an environmental risk. Species are dying in large numbers due to human activities and poaching and this is a threat to the natural environment.
- Pollution is the greatest environmental risk in the modern days. This includes water, air and soil pollution each of which is posing great danger to the environment.
- Water shortage due to global warming is also an environmental threat as plants and animals may die by lack of enough water.
- Depletion of natural resources is also making the earth an obsolete planet. Since some of the resources like minerals can be depleted, over-mining may lead to lack of resources in the future.
- Deforestation is also an environmental risk as it causes not only a disturbance to the ecosystem but it is also the major cause if climate change.
- Degradation of soil due to increased farming activities is also an environmental risk since soil is an important natural resource needed for food production and if misused the planet would have low food production.
How to save earth
- Reducing pollution is a way of saving the earth since pollution is the major threat to the planet.
- Conserving water will also ensure that we preserve our water sources.
- Conserving energy will also reduce the depletion of natural resources and reduce pollution.
- Planting trees and advocating against deforestation is the major way of saving the earth from climate change.
- Saving paper is also a way of reducing the levels of deforestation since trees are used in paper production.
- Carrying out regular community environmental cleanups will ensure that we keep our planet clean.
Earth is the only planet that is known to sustain life. Earth has many natural resources each of which offer numerous benefits to the inhabitants if the planet. It is hence of utter importance to take care of this great planet and ensure that it does not die in the future due to the depletion of its resources.