9“We really do not have a lot of time left to save the prairie,” says Ron Cole. A prairie is a large, flat area covered with grasses.
10Prairies have very few trees Prairies have very few trees. Prairies once stretched across the middle part of the United States. Today, most of that land is covered with farms and towns instead of grasses.
11Ron Cole belongs to a conservation group that teaches people to take better care of the prairie. Their goal is to protect the prairie land that remains. That will help the plants and animals that live there.
13Experts warn us that many animals on our planet are in trouble Experts warn us that many animals on our planet are in trouble. More than one thousand animal species are endangered! That means that they may disappear forever and become extinct.
14It is natural for some plants and animals to become extinct It is natural for some plants and animals to become extinct. But now humans are causing more living things to become extinct than ever before. As people cut down forests, mow down prairies, or move into deserts, plants and wild animals get pushed out.
15Protecting endangered species is one of the hardest jobs people face Protecting endangered species is one of the hardest jobs people face. The good news is that people are working to solve this problem before it gets worse.
17A WAY TO HELP PLANET EARTH What can everyone do to helpkeep Earth clean?
18Keeping Earth healthy is an important job Keeping Earth healthy is an important job. That’s what environmental conservation is all about. People who do that job are working to keep the air, land, and water clean. They are also working to keep endangered plants and animals from becoming extinct.
19One of the hardest jobs is solving the problem of trash One of the hardest jobs is solving the problem of trash. The trouble with trash is that it keeps piling up. We could run out of places to put it.
20A lot of our trash comes from plastic A lot of our trash comes from plastic. Soda, juice, water, shampoo – these all come in plastic bottles. Too much plastic is one of our worst trash problems. When a plastic bottle becomes trash, it remains trash for hundreds of years.
21That’s because plastic doesn’t change much as it gets old That’s because plastic doesn’t change much as it gets old. Is there a better way to deal with plastic? Yes! We can recycle it.
23When we recycle, we take something that’s been used and turn it into something new. An old plastic bottle can stay old and become trash. Or that old plastic bottle can be recycled and become something new.
24Here’s how it works. People save their plastic bottles Here’s how it works. People save their plastic bottles. A special recycle truck picks the bottles up and takes them to the recycling center. Here, the bottles are crushed into small pieces. Then the small pieces of plastic are melted down. The melted plastic is sent to a factory.
251. Plastic is separated from other trash 2 1. Plastic is separated from other trash 2. Sanitation trucks collect the recyclables 3. plastics are taken to a recycling center 4. bottles are crushed into small pieces 5. a factory turns recycled plastic into something new and useful
26At the factory, the old plastic is made into something new At the factory, the old plastic is made into something new. It may become a new bottle or maybe a new rug. It may become a backpack or maybe even a slide at a playground!
27Sometimes there’s not much kids can do to help solve our planet’s problems. But kids can do a lot about trash. Recycling is one way all people, young and old, can make a big difference!
30Cormelia Gogu lives in Romania Cormelia Gogu lives in Romania. Last year her school did not have clean water to drink. The water pipes were old and rusty. Workers from several countries replaced the pipes so Cormelia’s school now has clean water.
31Cormelia doesn’t take water for granted. But many people do Cormelia doesn’t take water for granted. But many people do. In the United States we can just turn on a faucet to get clean water. It isn’t that easy in other countries.
32Most of the Earth is covered with water Most of the Earth is covered with water. But only a small amount is safe to drink. Some places receive little rainfall, so there isn’t enough water to grow crops.
33In other places the water is so dirty that it is not safe to drink.
34Groups such as the United Nations are working to solve these problems Groups such as the United Nations are working to solve these problems. People need to save water so that everyone has water to drink.