Side effect of Coronavirus benefits the environment 

Soyoun (Ashley) M., News Editor

There is little good to be said about a global pandemic, yet every cloud has a silver lining. The coronavirus outbreak has changed lives all over the world, and it has also affected the environment. 


“The news about our environment improving seems like a ray of hope in this dark time for everyone,” said sophomore Veronica B. 


In the last couple of months, cases of the coronavirus skyrocketed, leading to thousands of untimely deaths, nationwide lockdowns, overwhelmed healthcare systems, and a global economic recession. 


“It’s difficult to see how many families are being impacted by the coronavirus. Many families are facing financial issues or even deaths in the family,” said sophomore Sally M. 


Life has changed for people worldwide as we are working from home, businesses are closed, and social distancing is the number one rule to follow. 


“I think it’s really important to be staying home at times like these to help the efforts of flattening the curve,” said Sally M. 


Yet there are some positives that have resulted from this global pandemic. Pollution levels have drastically decreased since travel became restricted.  


According to BBC News, carbon monoxide emissions in New York from cars have decreased nearly 50% compared to last year and placing an emphasis on practicing social distancing by staying home decreased traffic levels in New York City by 35%. 


Drops in pollution levels have been observed in China and Europe as well. 


According to the New York Post, “China’s level of nitrogen dioxide, a greenhouse gas that can cause respiratory problems and cancer, was down 42%, according to government monitoring stations […] And following global social-distancing measures, Madrid, Spain, saw nitrous oxide levels fall by 56% in March, while cities including Paris and Milan as well as Brussels, Belgium, and Frankfurt, Germany, have experienced similar drops.” 


“It’s interesting to see how drastically air pollution levels have decreased due to the lack of travelling. I think this could be a time for clean energy and improving the quality of our earth,” said junior Amy L. 


Less travelling has also led to the rejuvenation of popular tourist areas.  


According to CNN News, residents in India have been able to see the Himalayas for the first time in decades due to the reduction in air pollution. In Venice, Italy the water in their renowned canals have been clear enough to see the fish swimming.  


“Although it’s interesting to see how animals are reclaiming cities, I’m also worried for animals that relied on humans for survival,” said Amy L. 


Recently, staff at the Meltham Wildlife Reserve in West Yorkshire, England reported the appearance of a bird that was underweight and incapable of feeding itself.  


According to the New York Post, in Nara, Japan, the sudden cessation of tourism has prompted herds of deer, who used to feed on food scraps left by people in public parks, to wander farther into the streets in search of a quick bite. 


Although the coronavirus has changed many things in our lives, it has also bought us an opportunity to coexist peacefully with animals and improve our air quality. 


“The whole world is under risk, but this was a moment of happiness. It was a feeling that nature was transforming itself,” said Andrade, environmental manager for the city of Paulista in an article from The Washington Post. 🔳