Let’s Start 2019 with a Fresh Outlook Regarding Climate Change & Sustainability
As we head closer to the start of a new year, 2019, it is common place to reflect. Where have we been? Where are we going? The reflections are often personal. Personal goals centering around health, wellness, family and finances are common. Many of us also take this time to explore the world around us and use this time of year to discuss global issues with family and friends. We are thankful for the blessings in our lives and realize that there are many around us that are facing challenges. This year has been one that many of us will not be quick to forget. This past year has been one full of moments, situations and circumstances that have impacted us as individuals as well as neighbourhoods, communities, and even countries.
In Toronto, it has been one of the most violent years on record. There have been stabbings, shooting and situations which have impacted many people at one time. We have realized, sad to say, that we are not insulated from these tragedies, as we always innocently thought. On a larger scale, violence between man kind is plaguing the world around us. Incidents are becoming more frequent, more violent and much more relevant. You would be hard pressed to find someone who was not affected by one of the acts of mass terror this year. School shootings, car rammings, movie theater shootings and church/synagogue shootings. They hit home. It could have been us or our loved ones. When things become personal, it is easier to fight back. We have the energy, the resources and the will to fight and to right what we feel is wrong. Social media has proven to be a conduit for change. Hashtags strengthen and promote issues, situations and causes, whether personal or global. What prompts an issue to become viral? What makes one cause more important than another?
Resolution for 2019 – Let’s Care More About Climate Change & Mean It!
A recent opinion piece by Dan Gardner in the Globe and Mail, may offer an answer. Many of us, especially those reading this blog, are sensitive to Climate Change and to the effects that the climate has caused and is causing. The relevant hashtags go in and out of popularity largely depending on the current circumstances. After damaging floods, they are more popular and during stretches of pleasant weather and calm, they are virtually non-existent.
Dan Gardner’s headlining question, “Why don’t we care about Climate Change?” should stop us in our tracks. We know we are on a dangerous path. We know that unless we change our ways, dramatically and immediately, the world as we know it will be destroyed, yet, it is not a topic of priority for most. Is it because Climate Change is hard to pin point, hard to understand? It is not necessary something that is easily tangible nor is the way that our individual actions impact the world around us. As Dan Gardner mentions, the concept of risk and reward, in relation to climate change, is not easily apparent. That said, we can not allow this to continue to be our excuse.
Climate Change & Sustainability | Small Changes – Big Impact!
Not only do we have to change our individual ways, we must do our part to affect change in our world around us, our neighbourhoods, communities and even globally. There is no change too small. The discussions we are having with our family and friends should also be focused around environmental issues, around sustainability and around “green” practices.
Hashtags focusing on these issues should be front and center every day. The municipal decision makers need to see that the environment and the future of the Earth is a priority for all, always.
It is easier than ever to implement change and to combine efforts to ensure the greatest momentum is developed. Circling back to Dan Gardner’s article, we do care about Climate Change, we just have to ensure that everyone understand it is a real threat to each and every one of us. We have to treat Climate Change the way we would any other threat to ourselves, our families and the world around us.
We have to change our ways and include sustainable BMP in our daily lives, in our work lives and in the lives of the people, the community and the world around us. Working together, we can ensure that 2019 will be the first step along the pathway of change. Let us vow to make #ClimateChange a hashtag that is not easily forgotten. Wishing everyone a Healthy, Happy, Prosperous, and of course, “Green” New Year!