Certain sets of words in the English language tend to confuse us writers. I have found the following to be among them:
AFFECT / EFFECT
As verbs, affect can mean to have influence on someone or something while effect means to bring about something:
We need to favorably affect the earth’s atmosphere by reducing our carbon footprint in order to effect a vital reduction in global warming.
Most often, however, the word effect is used as a noun:
Humanity’s carbon footprint is having a negative effect on the earth’s atmosphere.
If this all seems a bit confusing, perhaps the safest way to go is to think of affect as a verb and effect as a noun and use some other word or phrase to mean to bring about.
© 2016 Ann Henry. All Rights Reserved.