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I want you to think of what got you interested in environmental studies enough to take this class.  For me it was Captain planet which was an animated children’s TV show that I’m sure many of you remember.  The main purpose behind the show was to teach children about the environment around us and how we should protect it to keep the ecosystems from being destroyed.  It featured Captain Planet and the Planeteers who were young citizens from around the world who fought for environmental justice and fought against large corporations who pollute the world with toxic waste.  In nearly every episode the PLaneteers do their part but usually rely on Captain Planet to finish the job for them and save the day.  While we don’t have a super hero to rely on to save us from ourselves and our destructive ways we can take his message very seriously, “The power is yours”!  This reminds us that we must take responsibility to clean up after ourselves and others and only we can save the planet.

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We never really know what we will find when we drill into the Earth.  Geologist drilling in the Karakorum Desert in Turkmenistan found out how true that was.  While drilling for oil in the desert they discovered a large underground cavern full of natural gas.  With the weight of the drill, trucks, people and all the other equipment the cavern turn into a giant sinkhole taking everything with it.  The pit known now, as the ‘Gates of Hell’ is approximately two football fields wide and nearly 100 feet deep.  At the time of the incident, no official report was filed, nor were there any news articles on the disaster.  The remaining crew decided to light the pit on fire to stop the expelling poisonous gas.  This happened back in 1971, and still today no studies have been done to measure the amount of gasses released into the air every day. The pit can be seen for miles at night and people see the Gates of Hell as a tourist attraction oblivious to the risks involved with being around a giant gas-burning pit.  There is a serious need for environmental management around the world to control dangerous natural phenomenons from harming others.  Here are som  e photos of the pit and a quick video of the pit.

http://quinncreative.wordpress.com/2008/07/11/the-gates-of-hell-in-tajikistan/

http://www.picturenice.com/photogallery/main.php?g2_itemId=721

http://kaganga.com/i-want-to-know/hell-gate-hole-in-uzbekistan.html