Become a prophet of do something about it.
A while ago I was inspired by a YouTube video by Levi Hildebrand someone posted on my Facebook group. That’s positive environmentalism:
It’s great to see young people (ie younger than I) getting out there and promoting positive solutions to the world’s problems, especially when it’s funny. My kind of thinking.
Meanwhile, a historian riding a huge wave of sales called Yuval Noah Harari has written a book warning that humanity could soon be divided into a kind of “data-stocracy” who control all the data (and our thoughts) and the rest of us. Then there are the rich who will transmute into a new species, autocracies able to punish our every dissenting thought … scary stuff.
All of which apparently can happen if we don’t watch out. So in order to maintain healthy sleep patterns I’m looking for a more hopeful vision of life.
People like Yuval Harari project history into the future to take a kind of prophetic role in the world. But the ancient Prophets warned only what would happen if we turned away from God. If we followed God’s Word – sanctify life – we could avoid catastrophe. So it is with our relationship to each other, and our relationship with our breathtakingly beautiful planet on which we all depend for physical, emotional and spiritual sustenance. Sanctify life.
We can avoid environmental catastrophe, but we have to act now. We can’t escape that bit.
It’s easy these days to find out what’s wrong with the world but just knowing what’s wrong doesn’t actually change anything.
Eco-positivity says: yes, it’s serious, yes we have to take action. But wringing our hands in despair and curling up into a ball isn’t going to solve anything (although it does feel good!). So we need to stay positive as we take action. It takes a certain inner strength to do this.
So here are three ways you can be part of the solution:
- Drive less – or not at all (especially if you don’t have a licence). According to Greenpeace International transport contributes 13% to global CO2 emissions
- Start to replace plastic bottles with non-plastic alternatives. According to Surfers Against Sewage there are approximately 51 trillion microscopic pieces of plastic on Earth, weighing 269,000 tons. That’s 500 times the number of stars in our galaxy. Something to think about.
- Wear sustainable fabrics. This is an article I wrote on sustainable clothing https://fruganomics.net/2018/01/29/five_ways_to_make_your_wardrobe_zero_waste/
It’s bad news that we’re not taking proper care of our one Planet. But see it as a challenge, not as a hopeless disaster. Be like Levi Hildebrand – make ’em laugh, then get them to do something about it.
I’m so intrigued by the video but sadly my internet won’t load it right now! Will have to come back later for that. Anyway, I agree with the need for a “can do” proactive approach. It’s very easy to get overwhelmed and apathetic about all this, but like you say, only action will help.
My personal recommendation for the top practical things people can do are:
1. Change your energy provider to one offering renewable energy. In many places you can now get 100% renewable for the same prices or even lower than the ‘standard’.
2. Cut down on meat, especially beef. It’s a bigger contributor to climate change than all transport combined.
Thanks for your comment Tegan. These are both good points. One of my personal themes is that we still have the choice to do things like eating beef, but if we just start to moderate it all we’d all be moving in the right directions. Maybe we know what the right thing to do is, but it’s still not easy to change our habits.
I am doing my very best to drive as little as possible. We went from two cars to one car and both my husband and I try to walk or bike as much as we can. As well as the drop in our fuel bills, we have seen the benefits in our health too. Thank you for always staying positive!
When we lived in New Zealand we both had cars. Ironically, NZ is the kind of place you usually need a car to get around. Once we got to London Sue took one look at the traffic and gave up driving! We have one car, and it’s a hybrid.
Good post, it’s so easy to be overwhelmed by everything wrong in the world!
Nice post! So intrigued by the book.
I already do the above, and have to say it makes me feel so much better about my life, as I feel like I am doing something good.
I made a conscious choice to always improve a little something in my life to make it a low-waste, sustainable one, but just a little step everytime so as to feel good about it instead of getting overwhelmed! It works 🙂
So great that you are sharing the word!
Yes to all of this. What really got me motivated into action was the (paraphrased) words of Gandhi: “be the change you wish to see in the world.” And the funny thing is since I’ve become more public about my eco-consciousness through my blog I’ve had friends and family say I’ve inspired them to change their habits. I never saw myself as a trendsetter before. But anyone can do this. And it’s up to all of us to do it together ?
It’s amazing how ordinary people can inspire others