So, it’s been a while since I’ve written anything. To be honest, this “election season” plus COVID and dealing with the school year have just really gotten me down. My stress levels have been through the roof and I have not slept through the night in months. I know that I’m not unusual. Everyone is feeling like this. One bright spot is the recent news that Biden is installing John Kerry as a climate change envoy and pledging to rejoin the Paris agreement. After four LONG years, we can start to get back on track as a nation in the effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, something we should have done decades ago of course, but these last four years have been a major setback. I’ve also been buoyed a bit by the news that the U.K. recently put forth a major initiative aimed at restoring natural biodiversity by cutting farm subsidies in some areas and encouraging sustainable farming methods. Also, The Guardian reports many countries are pledging to be carbon neutral by 2050 or 2060 and two North Atlantic right whale newborns were recently spotted (this is a big deal!). Some rare good news.
But of course, the uplifting headlines are few and far between the negative ones. Just today these are a few of the headlines I saw:
(Note: this is a series of depressing photos on CNN’s website. This picture is of a cow that died of dehydration in an area that has seen climate change-exacerbated drought.)
You already knew it if you read some of my previous posts. Of course this mostly applies to those of you not eating a vegan diet.
And the hits keep coming. I’m not going to get into it now, but as more sea ice melts in the Arctic in the summer, the rate of warming for the entire planet will increase. The Arctic is a proverbial canary in a coal mine. That particular canary stopped singing decades ago, we just turned a deaf ear.
Sewage + warmer temperatures = low oxygen. Low oxygen = no fish. My first year environmental science students can all educate you on this issue. It's a classic.
Every year is now the hottest year. None of this is surprising, but it’s like icing on the worst cake ever. I can’t offer any words of comfort. All I can say is that now more than ever we need to advocate our legislators for quick and radical actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. We also need to take personal responsibilities: stop eating meat and dairy, buy less stuff, use less energy, etc, etc. You know the drill. Stop making excuses and do what you know has to be done. In the words of someone (?) "Do what must be done." (I feel like that's a Star Wars quote, but I have no idea who said it or which of the million Star Wars/Star Wars spin-off movies it was in.)
Commentary on environmental news/issues plus thoughts and stories about my journey to lower my environmental footprint and raise my voice.
-Another vegan environmentalist