As I write this, fires are burning out of control around the country, lives have been lost, millions of animals have perished, thousands of homes have been razed to the ground and over 8 million hectares of land has burned.
As we hear more and more about the environmental crises around the world, interspersed with the lack of action by our governments or even an acknowledgement of the cause of the situation, it can weigh heavy on our hearts and minds. For many there is a feeling of grief and despair. But through all this we mustn’t forget the positive. In amongst the ashes people are finding a beauty as they come together with their communities to care for one another and work out how best to support each other in this new future.
Let this be the impetus for change. Let this be our call to action. To come together as communities and make this world a better place. We can’t wait for the government to take action, although we need to try to force them to. We can start where we are and do what we can, together. There are many types of activism and we need to find how we can make a difference in a way that speaks to us (Climate activism: find your calling, page 62).
For one, we don’t have to wait for the government to do something about carbon sequestration. Right now we can store carbon in our own backyards. Acadia Tucker shares with us how plants and soils sequester carbon and what we can do to make our gardens a carbon sink (Storing carbon in your own backyard, page 32). By replacing conventional farming practices with regenerative farming practices we could sequester all our global carbon emissions.
And did you know that working less and staying at home more is actually good for the planet? Lauren Carter shares ideas about home-based living (Home-based living for the climate conscious, page 79), and how having more time at home allows you to live more lightly.
There are also positive seafood choices we can make that won’t harm our marine ecosystems (Sustainable seafood buying guide, page 44). There is a range of native foods that have been growing in this country for tens of thousands of years, that are well adapted to our climate and we can start including in our diet (Native foods: the oldest foods on earth, page 26). And in the face of our throwaway culture, there is a growing movement of people who aren’t buying in and are creating ways to fix and repair items so they don’t have to go into landfill (Repair cafes: more than just repairs, page 58).
All these small actions being made by everyday people as part of the collective whole are creating a wave of change that is growing bigger and stronger and gaining momentum. Every little action that we take and choice we make has power and is worth doing, despite how small it may seem. And each one of these actions also has a ripple effect as other people get inspired by what we are doing, just as we have been inspired by the actions of others.
And it doesn’t matter where you are on your journey; whether you’ve been living in an environmentally responsible way for years, or whether you’re just starting out, that next action that you take matters. And collectively it makes a big difference.
Happy reading and keep up the good work.