Climate change is real; it is happening, and everyone can do something about it.
I began to resist a growing consumer culture and decided to make conscious and intentional eco-friendly choices for myself and my family many years ago when I first began to hear about ozone layer damage and global warming – and how the damage to our planet was going beyond natural greenhouse effects. Many people wanted to make a difference as more information was being shared in the 1990’s, however the importance has seemed to be lost over the years in misunderstandings, government and political denial and inconvenience.
Today I wanted to share why making these types of choices is important to your health and your family’s health too – and what you can do now.
When I was growing up our household bins were half the size of one wheelie bin now, we never bought fruit and vegetables wrapped in plastic, we mended clothes or handed them down rather than throw them out and buy new ones. When I was growing up Mum and Dad didn’t get takeaway coffee on the way to work every morning, and takeaway or fast food of any sort was a luxury. When I was growing up we visited more parks with trees and grass, and less parks with artificial ground covers and rides. When I was growing up tropical heat rarely affected Brisbane, and storms, floods and bushfires were not a frequent annual occurrences. So much has changed since I was growing up.
Because of the changes I have seen and experienced over the last few decades, because I feel that I am responsible for the world my three children grow up in, and because I want my grandchildren to experience clean air, trees, good health, fresh food choices and a beautiful planet, I have decided to take action towards reducing my footprint as much as I can.
CSIRO and the Bureau of Meteorology predicted in 2015 that temperatures in Australia could rise by 5 degrees by 2090 – well over the rate of global warming experienced by the rest of the world. There will be more sweltering summers, more droughts, more extreme rainfall and less snow. The time is now to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to head off the worst of climate change for Australia.
Everyone can turn the tide – so to speak! We must mitigate and adapt. Mitigation encourages you to reduce your consumption of energy. Adaption is crucial as some climate change outcomes are already happening and here to stay so we must look after the health of ourselves and our animal population in the wake of these environmental impacts.
Climate change is a global issue, and that’s big! Yet I believe that all individual and community efforts add up and solutions do exist.
So, here is some simple things you might want to start doing today to help our planet and leave a better world for our children’s children.
- Stop using plastic bags and switch to cloth shopping bags. Australians use between four and six billion plastic bags annually.
- Ban the bag | sign petition
- Use energy saving light bulbs. Typically these use about 25%-80% less energy than traditional incandescent light bulbs, saving you money and they last 3-25 times longer.
- Reduce purchasing products with unnecessary packaging. Packaging takes a lot of energy, water and other natural resources to produce.
- Don’t buy bottled water – refill your water bottles. Plastic water bottles take up to 1000 years to break down!
- Ever considered meat free Monday? Mass meat production is one of the main contributors to carbon dioxide emissions which in turn are the main cause of the climate change.
- Talk to people about it. Tell them what you are doing and why. Inspire your children and community to make climate and environmental friendly choices.
Here is a one minute video that I strongly urge you to watch, just in case you need extra motivation from very wise kids.
Please let me know what you are going to do differently. I know we can collectively make a difference.