There Are No More Excuses!
25 Years Ago We Did Not Know Better
When you care about the environment, it can often feel like you are preaching to the converted, as you are only really heard by those that also care about the environment,
When I was a smoker, I would see pictures of what really happened to your lungs when you smoked and I honestly couldn't hear the message- that was not going to happen to me. Thankfully, I was able to give up over 10 years ago now, but at the time, I was in complete denial of what was happening to my body as a result of my habit.
This is how I see the debate about conservation. Whilst it is clear to the vast majority of scientists, a huge swath of conservation and environmental charities and organisations, many farmers and land owners that our planet is warming up as a direct result of the lifestyles we are living, many people still refuse to hear the message and make the necessary changes.
25 years ago, I was standing on a street corner collecting money for Greenpeace, and reading as much information as was available about global glaciers, forests and oceans and what was happening to them. I worked a corporate job, and frankly, was seen as a bit of a hippie.
Neil deGrasse Tyson has a good point! Whilst we are beginning to see the consequences of looking the other way - flooding, tornados, forest fires, drought, hurricanes and more- they are affecting our families, our friends and our neighbours.
We can no longer pretend the weather is acting normally. In the UK we had the worst floods in decades and as was to be expected, folks were really put out. What was going through my mind was that this is just the beginning, that flooding is very likely to occur on a regular basis.
More water is pouring into the oceans from the glaciers, and in turn, this water expands, because of the rise in temperature. How this is felt across the world is in more and more extreme weather conditions and worsening conditions for humans, animals, birds and insects alike.
June 13, 2008, Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Somerset, UK early 2014
So Why Are So Many People Still In Denial?
Global warming will affect some more than others. Those in countries where the land is almost at sea level are already being told to find somewhere else to live.
In contrast, in many places around the world, global warming has so far only been a nuisance or an inconvenience.
The one point that so many of us do not understand is that we are all responsible for the upkeep of the planet, wherever we are situated. Our food today comes from many different countries - from Asia, from Africa, from Latin America and from Europe. If one of those countries that provides our food suffers with crop failure due to drought or flooding, suddenly global warming is affecting the global family.
And the problem is that in many of the poorer countries that we source our food from, they are more vulnerable to extreme weather. In Africa, drought, in Asia flooding and so on.
People are able to deny the consequences of global warming because as yet, their lives have not been affected.
How the European Countries Will Look When The Glaciers Have Melted
How the Americas Will Look When The Glaciers Have Melted
What to Do? Look Local...
Faced with the issues of global warming, it can be overwhelming, and this can be why people choose to ignore the problem. Overwhelm is not a good place to try to react from- for most of us, overwhelm simply prevents us from any action.
What you can do locally is huge. With each time you spend money, you are making a choice. Make a choice that includes the care taking of the planet.
Buy products without harmful chemicals- good for you, your family and the environment, as once you are finished with them, they go into the water system and pollute our water.
Walk when you could drive. Again, good for you and your children, and the environment.
Waste less. Good for your bank balance, and the planet.
Use less heat, electricity and gas, and insulate your house well.
Grow vegetables and fruit where you can- fun for the family and better for the planet.
None of the above is difficult or asking too much. Some of it even saves you money, gets you and your family fit, and tastes better!
I know that if you are reading this, you probably already know this.
Want to hear what I decided to do?
What I Decided To Do....
Tree Planting Holidays
I was indignant about the state of our home, and really struggling to know what to do to help our planet. I was posting on Facebook about how awful deforestation was, and I heard a voice asking "Well, what are you going to DO about it?"
Good question I thought, and then spent 2 days pondering the question. What was I going to do?
I decided what I wanted to do was to plant trees in the tropics, where the research shows that it is most effective.
Although this is something I have never done before, and is a mammoth task, I decided that rather than feel helpless in the face of climate change, I would actively try to do something to help it.
The plan is to raise the money to plant 1 million trees in a sustainable forest, and generate jobs for the local people by making sustainable charcoal, bee products, and other non timber forest products.
We will build some accommodation that is also sustainable and invite people to come for Tree Planting Holidays. Planting trees, relaxing, seeing the wildlife, and enjoying the peace and quiet.
Please visit http://www.treeplantingholidays.com to find out more and to see if you can help in anyway.