Extinction? Can we survive the century?
I’m not going to try and convince you that climate change is real or not.
If you don’t believe it's real there's nothing I can say that will change your mind.
But perhaps – like many of us – you feel powerless? How can one person make a difference? In reality there are many people who have had a massive impact on the world. Nelson Mandela. Gandhi. The Dalai Lama. Greta Thurnberg.
So you’re not really powerless at all. If most of us start taking action now we can limit a lot of the damage!
Yes - It might mean you’ll have to sacrifice some parts of your modern life-style but surely that’s better than a total ecological meltdown?
Some things that you can do are -
1. View climate change not as a soul destroying disaster but as an opportunity for you to become a better and more motivated person. As Schwarzenegger says in Terminator 3 – “Anger is more useful than despair!” You should be angry. Your environment is on the brink of a complete collapse.
2. Join (or start) a group –Extinction Rebellion Aotearoa and Climate Justice Aotearoa - are two groups with local branches who is both committed trying to change the mindset of the coal/oil/gas industries by both lobbying and direct action.
3. Reduce your own ecological impact as much as you can.
- The two biggest things you can do are to cut out or reduce your meat and dairy consumption (as much as you can!) and try hard to limit your air travel. Do you really need that overseas trip? What about a holiday somewhere local?
- You can also compost your food waste and grow your own vegetables.
- You can cycle or walk or use public transport or an electric car if you can.
- Try to buy things from businesses whose values align with your own.
- Try and find a group who are planting trees or developing a community garden.
- Walk or ride a bike or take public transport.
4. Get politically active!
Attend marches, sign petitions, and write letters to politicians. When something pisses you off do something about it. Tell other people. Go on organised marches. Write letters to the news papers and to politicians. Some of the changes that we need to be demanding are -
- A complete stop to oil and gas drilling
- A rapid movement from oil and gas to other sources of energy. We have enough hydro/wind and solar power to supply our needs.
- No new dairy farms and a reduction to pre-1970 levels.• All packaging must be made to easily recyclable or made from sustainable renewables such as hemp.
Dr Antony Harris - noted NZ insect insect scientist protesting at the Minerals Forum Meeting in Dunedin in May 2019
'Toothfish's 'Extinction' poster at the Beehive for the School Climate Strike in Wellington - March 15, 2019.