October 10, 2018

What Can I Do About Climate Change?


Another dire warning about climate change was released this week in a U.N. report. Actually, it is the direst so far of many similar reports. Some of the scientists working on the report were not optimistic that the unprecedented changes that are required will actually happen. 

But that doesn't mean that you can't do something, even if the main benefit is maintaining your integrity and peace of mind. Or maybe everything you do, every choice you make, makes a difference in restoring balance to our wobbly system.

So, what can I do about climate change? What can one person do? The only thing you have direct control over - your own choices.

What each of us can do that will make a difference, is choose to voluntarily live more simply. Consume less. Reduce waste. Choose renewable energy sources. Travel less. Grow a garden. Eat a plant based diet. Get off plastic. There's no shortage of choices that each of us can act on now.

Will you single-handedly keep the global temperature from rising 2 degrees above normal? No. But you will be doing what you can, and you will be able to sleep better at night knowing you are trying to not be part of the problem.

What if it is all a hoax and you choose to make changes to live more simply, and create a more enjoyable, less harmful lifestyle for nothing? 

That would be alright, too, because choosing not to do anything would be the worst choice of all.



“Limiting warming to 1.5 degrees is not impossible, but it will require unprecedented transitions in all aspects of society.” 
- Hoesung Lee, IPCC Chair 
Finally, we also need to let our politicians know that we expect them to enact unprecedented policy changes this December, when the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change meets in Poland to negotiate policies. 

Contact your representatives today. Keep on contacting them. Tell them you won't vote for deniers or fossil fuel puppets.



Interesting Facts: 

In the U.S. and Canada alone, the fossil fuel industry rakes in almost $260 billion in profit per year. 

Global fossil fuel subsidies were $5.3 trillion in 2015. 

Eliminating all subsidies would have reduced global carbon emissions in 2013 by 21% and fossil fuel air pollution deaths 55%, while raising revenue of 4%, and social welfare by 2.2%, of global GDP.



7 comments:

  1. I read a book called Hospitable Planet. What struck me is how cumulative and long-lasting the emissions are. Another point was that forests store carbon. The book also refuted the idea that the Bible allows mankind to exploit the Earth. It surprised me that people would ever think that way because I was taught we were Earth's caretakers.

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    Replies
    1. Annie,

      That's right - even if we reduced emissions to zero today, the climate change flywheel would keep spinning for some time. And we are cutting forests like there is no tomorrow.

      That interpretation of the Bible always confused me. For me, the caretaker aspect was always more prominent. It makes more sense, unless you are an opportunistic capitalist.

      Delete
  2. I've noticed the last week in particular that there suddenly send to be a lot more serious write ups in more mainstream media regarding the latest climate change news. Even though I sometimes despair if many people are really believing/understanding these articles, at least they are coming thick and fast now. Those of us who have been aware for some time of the difficult times ahead can only keep doing exactly as you've suggested Gregg. Our actions may or may not help at all but at least we'll lead by example and lay straight in our beds each night.

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    Replies
    1. Karen,

      We should never underestimate the importance of laying straight in our beds each night.

      Delete
  3. Thanks for addressing the UN report, Gregg. My hope is that this will bring awareness of our situation to more and more people. I became quite upset when reading about it, but I quickly (one day) got back into my normal mode, which is optimism and a can-do spirit. Whichever way things go, I'd much rather live in light than in a place of despair. And I continue to do my deal, which is: no flying; minimal car travel; a 98% vegetarian way of eating; buying used clothes, books, etc.; VOTING (with my dollar and my actual vote); and campaigning for political candidates that want a better, healthier planet for all. Thanks for all you do.

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  4. I also wanted to share this with everyone:
    https://www.theguardian.com/science/2018/oct/12/mary-robinson-climate-change-former-president-ireland-ipcc-report

    "Hope brings energy."

    Let's get to work!

    ReplyDelete
  5. 'If you think you are too small to make a difference, try sleeping with a mosquito.' The Dalai Lama

    Madeleine

    ReplyDelete

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