The situation is much worse than we are told by those in power and much worse than the day to day discussion in the media would suggest.
The need to take action on climate is more urgent and more immediate than ever. The measures currently being taken at the national level – and even the best plans, currently being floated at the international level – are quite inadequate to meet the current level of threat.
The main reason for this is that the destabilisation of global climate has progressed much more quickly than scientists thought. This has had the result that the plans developed to deal with it are now insufficient, being based on out of date scientific projections.
But what can we do when faced by such a massive issue?
Firstly, as a business, we are always keen to show our support and by collectively signing up to Second Hand September (oxfamapps.org), we are doing an amazing job of keeping each other motivated; we share what we have purchased and how this helps to reduce the harmful effects that fast fashion has on people and planet.
If you want to do your bit for the environment, getting public transport and leaving the car at home is one of the most straightforward things to do. Furthermore, taking public transport instead of driving to work appears to make people happier and helps them to sleep better, according to a new study. Researchers reported that car commuters were 13 per cent more likely to feel they were under constant strain or unable to concentrate. Yesterday, I attended a networking event on public transport without any delays. I had a chance to work on the train and enjoyed relaxing on the way back so it certainly made me feel happier.
On an individual level, we can make a difference by eating a plant-based diet – anyone who is interested can sign up for the seven-day Plate Up for the Planet (vegansociety.com) challenge. The production of meat and other animal products places a heavy burden on the environment – from crops and water required to feed the animals, to the transport and other processes involved from farm to fork. The vast amount of grain feed required for meat production is a significant contributor to deforestation, habitat loss and species extinction. In Brazil alone, the equivalent of 5.6 million acres of land is used to grow soya beans for animals in Europe. This land contributes to developing world malnutrition by driving impoverished populations to grow cash crops for animal feed, rather than food for themselves. On the other hand, considerably lower quantities of crops and water are required to sustain a vegan diet, making the switch to veganism one of the easiest, most enjoyable and most effective ways to reduce our impact on the environment.
Sometimes, we just need to do a small something to help address the global issues.