The climate change counter on this blog started, if I remember correctly, with more than 80 months before it’d be too late to do something to save the earth. Now it’s down to 12 months.
So, will they strike a meaningful deal in Paris this week? Don’t hold your hopes up. For as long as the big corporations that profit from globalisation hold sway while paying lip service to climate change, the planet will go to the dogs. For as long as we buy the argument that the world economy is more important than the planet, and that stimulating consumption is the only way to revive the economy, the planet will go to the dogs.
If we truly care about climate change, if we really want those who are still kids today to enjoy a beautiful countryside that changes with the seasons, clement weather that doesn’t flood, blow away or bury homes, and a decent, healthy and secure life, then we ourselves must take action. The most important things we can do are:
- Eat less meat. Livestock generate huge amounts of emissions and take up huge amounts of land that can be used to grow food to feed many more people instead.
- Travel less. Aviation emissions are particularly bad because of the altitude at which they are generated. Anyway, do you really want to go through increasingly tiresome airport security and delays, for the privilege of taking pictures at tourist sights that do not remotely reflect the way locals really live?
- Spend less. Retail therapy is not really therapy; you end up more stressed staring at the credit card bill and wondering whether to rent a mini-warehouse to put all your stuff, and whether to throw a lot of it into the landfill.
These are not sacrifices; these are ways towards a healthier, less stressful life. And it also helps the planet. Time to act.