There is no doubt that this year has been incredibly challenging for all of us to the extent that Covid has in many ways managed to break down our cultural and societal barriers. It doesn’t care who it chooses and by virtue of this it has unfortunately become the largest communal global experience of our lifetime.
Fading into the background of this conversation though is undeniably the greatest common threat to our species and our planet - the climate crisis which continues to rise exponentially.
Ice loss from Greenland and Antarctica is tracking the worst case climate warming scenario set out by scientists, melting at a rate six times faster than in the 1990’s. Early this year Australia saw more 3 billion animals killed or harmed in wildfires with a 30% loss of habitat.
“From sunrises to sunsets, the oceans, mountains, and everything in between, we have been given the shared gift of the most beautiful planet in the universe and it is our right and our obligation to protect it.”
In California whole cities are threatened with homelessness and deforestation fires in the Amazon has already caused a significant loss to wildlife and poses a massive threat to our ecosystem as a whole.
Closer to home whilst we all witnessed the fact that despite all its devastation the early days of the pandemic actually saw us give the planet a much needed break, as lockdowns have come and gone our single use plastic consumption has risen dramatically through disposable masks and gloves.
There is no question that we need systemic change and immediate government action. Whilst our politicians may be unable to take full control of the virus they can and should be using this as an opportunity to shift our societies as whole towards clean and renewable energy resources and to force the end of single use plastics. We should see embargo’s against countries and industries flouting environmental policies in place of oil embargoes.
We need to demand international action and make this the single greatest issue on which we all cast our votes. From sunrises to sunsets, the oceans, mountains, and everything in between, we have been given the shared gift of the most beautiful planet in the universe and it is our right and our obligation to protect it.
Take action now/ what can we do:
Vote! Whenever you can use your vote as a call to action. In between elections petition your governments at a local and national level.
Use resources wisely: Walk or bike to work, make small changes to the way you shop and where possible make it local, and save energy where you can. Try to eat less meat (especially Beef) and stay away from products using palm oil.
Talk about it: The more we talk about climate change the easier it is to understand the steps that need to be taken and to normalise but also facilitate the changes around us. Talk about it with your children too, this needs to be multi generational and none is too small to take part.
Read: What We Know About Climate Change by Kerry Emanuel Losing Earth by Nathaniel Rich The Story of More by Hope Jahren Fashionopolis - The Price Of Fast Fashion and the Future of Clothes by Dana Thomas.
And for the little ones: Our House Is On Fire by Jeanette Winter
Research: Greenpeace.org.uk have set up some easy and straight forward calls to action Race to Zero is the international campaign for a healthy, resilient zero carbon recovery bringing together net zero commitments from cities, businesses, and investors set up by the United Nations - raising awareness of campaigns like this via social media helps pressure large corporations to make environmental commitments. Tag #racetozero