Every disaster film has a hero. Someone who surfaces just in time to kill the monster, drop the alien into an eternal abyss or keep an asteroid from hitting the earth. With no movie theaters opening soon, we could use a summer blockbuster with a strong super hero now. Someone to give us a little nugget of hope and pull us together to fight for the greater good.
But real life doesn’t always play out like our favorite movie… or does it? I was starting to feel as if we were living in a disaster movie when the world was in lock-down but I believed everything would end well. I know, a deadly pandemic was attacking humans all around the world, but I still had hope.
With no one out on the streets, we watched as “Carbon dioxide emissions plunged by a global average of 17% in April.” By staying in, we were protecting each other, and the bonus was we were helping the planet recover from all the negative effects our lifestyles have had on it. Something good was actually happening even though we were experiencing something bad, but recently my hopes were dashed when I read emmissions “have since surged again to within about 5% of last year’s levels.”
I feel like that kid standing on the sidewalk looking up just in time to see Superman fly by when BAM! That ugly monster peeks out from behind a skyscraper and swats him down.
According to The Guardian, “The world has only six months in which to change the course of the climate crisis and prevent a post-lock-down rebound in greenhouse gas emissions that would overwhelm efforts to stave off climate catastrophe”. Holy cripes Batman! Six months to save the world? Can our hero conquer the villain and save us before we run out of time?
We are emerging back into our old routines. We are eating out, heading to the beaches and even into bars, and our hero is having a tough time protecting us. He’s hurt and it looks as if that monster is holding a stick of Kryptonite over his head. Now I’m getting a feeling this movie won’t end well. There’s an hour left and we’re sitting on the edge of our seats, but more obstacles are thrown in our hero’s way.
The Arctic is melting and experiencing the hottest temperatures ever. It’s 104 degrees in Siberia and melting permafrost is making the carbon emissions worse, which makes the planet heat up more. Plus, now we are filling the oceans with more plastic and trash with the gloves and disposable masks we’re using to save ourselves from a deadly pandemic.
Things are looking bleak, but our hero isn’t dead yet. He’s still moving and he’s looking to us for help.
I have hope that we can get our hero back into fighting shape… and this is the moment to do it.
According to Jonathan Porritt as governments invest trillions of dollars into restoring their economies, “We must not miss this glorious chance to address the climate and biodiversity crises.”
He’s talking about not going back to our old ways and instead, creating jobs that will not only put people back to work but also restore our planet. Jobs that will make our cities cleaner, our lives healthier and our world better.
While we were shuttered inside, we witnessed our carbon emissions dropping and wildlife returning. We got a tiny glimpse of what a healthier planet could look like just by living a little differently.
Maybe instead of covering our eyes and ignoring suggestions from him and the many others like him on how we can fix things, we can fight the monster together.
It’s time for a green industrial revolution that will “restore purchasing power; create new jobs; prioritise the least well-off – and do all of that in ways that simultaneously make it possible for us to deliver climate stability and a thriving planet.”
Instead of relying on some caped, masked, do-gooder to swoop in and change the world, we are the ones who collectively must turn things around to save our planet.
Our destruction has created the very pandemic we are fighting and even with cases surging in the US, we must act now before we create more CO2 and surge past the point of no return.
This will take some serious muscle because those who refuse to admit Climate Change is a real problem are feeding the monster and those doing nothing to change their impact are just as bad as the villain itself.
Doing everything we can to reduce the CO2 in our atmosphere should be our number one priority.
Taking action will make us the heroes and we don’t need a super power to do it.
“NO CAPES!”…I just had to say that. We don’t need them anyway, but if we begin to do all we can to limit our carbon emissions, we will all become Superheroes.
6 ways to be a Climate Hero
1. CAST YOUR VOTE
Vote for Climate saving politicians who know the importance of saving our planet and all the species on it, including us. Look for the candidates who believe in creating jobs that increase the use of renewable energy and are more loyal to the health of our planet than the health of the industries harming it. Then write them, call them and hold them accountable. Apply pressure to the politicians currently in office and demand they support green initiatives. We are running out of time and the change must happen now. Click here to get a hold of your politicians!
– Added Bonus: You will have more impact on your local community and we will improve our health and the lives of those who have been continuously marginalized.
2. SHOP SMALL
Instead of feeding the big e-commerce companies contributing to our carbon emissions, support smaller, local, sustainable companies like MAJAMAS EARTH who offer a Climate Friendly Cart at checkout. I know, sounds like a shameless advertisement but adding a donation amount of your choice at checkout will help to reduce your carbon footprint by planting trees and supporting renewable energy projects.
– Added Bonus: Try only supporting companies that are locally manufactured or made in the country you live in to keep carbon emissions down.
3. EAT PLANTS
Reduce or eliminate meat, chicken and dairy from your diet. Large industrial meat production is one of the biggest contributors to the CO2 in our atmosphere. 7.1 gigatons of CO2 is emitted from the livestock industry. That’s 14.5% of the world’s carbon emissions. Give the best vegan meat alternatives a try and don’t give up if you don’t like one. There are plenty more out there to taste and test.
– Added Bonus: Your health will improve and you may even save some serious money on groceries.
4. COMPOST WASTE
Start composting your food waste and better yet, stop wasting food. Purchase smaller quantities when you shop and eat what you make. If your eyes are bigger than your stomach, save your leftovers for the next day’s lunch or if you must dispose of your food, compost it. Our food doesn’t just disappear or blend into the earth when it sits in a landfill. Instead it creates methane that contributes to 8% of the world’s total carbon emissions.
– Added Bonus: start a composting program or see where to compost in your community. See if there’s a compost program near you!
5. LIMIT TRAVEL
We’ve all learned many of us can work remotely, and we don’t need to jump on a plane to meet our clients face to face. Airplanes are one of the biggest contributors to global warming and by reducing our travel we can significantly lower our impact on our planet’s rising temperature. Do we really need to be flying over 100,000 airplanes each day? By opting not to fly, we can limit the carbon emissions that are currently heating our planet.
– Added Bonus: Push your community to add more bike lanes instead of car lanes. Demand your state politicians and those surrounding add more charging stations along the highways to support electric vehicles. Click here to contact the people who can improve transportation emissions!
6. JOIN ME FOR PLASTIC FREE JULY
For one month, refuse to purchase anything that comes in single-use plastic. Instead, substitute your shampoo, soap and anything you can for products that don’t come in plastic packaging. That means no longer ignoring the plastic container your favorite take-out comes in too. FOLLOW ME on INSTAGRAM for easy eco tips every day this month!
Speak up and tell the owners of the restaurants you’re trying to support to use compost-able packaging. Let them know you and fellow customers will continue to support them even if they must add a small fee to offset the higher cost of lower impact packaging. At the same time, urge your local government officials to support their restaurants by adding public compost containers and removal for the restaurants you support so you and they can dispose of their waste responsibly. Eventually they will have more compost-able waste than regular trash.
– Added Bonus: Write your favorite companies and demand they ban plastic packaging all together so you can continue to support them after July. Your purchasing choices wield purchasing power, so use it!
We may not be able to get back into the theaters just yet, but that doesn’t mean we can’t watch and support the heroes saving our planet.
That’s because our heroes are already living among us. That’s because we are the heroes who have the power to change the world.
Besides, this is not a job for one person, but a job for many. All of us must step up and become the heroes who change the way this movie ends.
I know, it stinks that we can’t leap tall buildings in a single bound but we can save our planet for future generations by acting now. So who needs a super hero when we can do it ourselves?
– Germaine Caprio, MAJAMAS EARTH Company Owner & Designer
Let ME know:
What are you doing to save the planet?
Please share your own thoughts with us – let’s get a conversation started in the comments below!