The magnificent wildlife species and beautiful habitats depicted on these pages often transcend borders, a fact that only adds to their majesty. Unfortunately, often they are also threatened by problems that, by their very scale, make solutions seem beyond the grasp of one person or even individual nations.
Take the issues of global climate change, acid rain and mercury pollution of our waterways: All seem to defy individual or even national remedies. Yet our personal actions can make a tremendous difference and can affect local, state and even international initiatives to meet these global-scale challenges.
For example, NWF's new The Toll From Coal report (on the Web at www.nwf.org) highlights the serious damage caused by air pollutants from U.S. coal-fired power plants. These pollutants contribute significantly to acid rain and global climate change; they often contain mercury, which poisons the rain that replenishes lakes and rivers (see page 26). It need not be so. Many of the biggest and dirtiest coal-fired power plants have evaded modern pollution controls for decades and now there is a real opportunity to require them to clean up their acts.
By highlighting this problem and the strategies to fix it, NWF seeks to empower individuals to make a difference, in their communities and beyond. The actions can be as simple as buying more energy-efficient …