Survival The reality of the climate crisis

Survival The reality of the climate crisis

The second half of 2019 will be seen as the time of Definitive Awareness of Realtime Climate Crisis (DARCC). In other words this is when everyone on the planet will become truly aware of, and start to take action about, survival. Of course, the second half of that statement is not assured. We do not necessarily respond to threats even when we observe them clearly, as we now do about our homes. NIMBY (Not In My Back Yard) is a good example of situations when people know something ought to be done but are not willing to do it if it affects them adversely and directly.

The time for such selfishness is past. We are all together or we are all lost.

The Northern Summer temperatures, the persistent melting of the Arctic, wildfires big enough for each of them to change the climate and the species decline, as reported by David Attenborough, all contribute to an increasing awareness, accompanied by enough fear, to make us at least more attentive. But that attention is turning to practice now. Slowly, nervously, reluctantly at first but gradually faster, with a fervour born of belief and anxiety.

We won’t forget the second half of 2019. It’s as though 2020 is the start of the Apocalypse.

The next phase of the Campaign of Ultimate Personal Survival (CUPS) is already starting. Groups have formed to reduce repeated use of throwaway oncers like drinking straws and onetime cups. The concept of a circular economy is well established. People are starting to behave personally responsibly in a way they never did before. Companies now know that there are significant numbers of consumers who look at both their products and their shares with an eye to the climate. Even the most hardbitten fund manager knows figures alone will no longer do.

Time for each individual to examine their behaviour with a view to cutting out 30% of irreplaceable energy and non-renewable resource used. Even where the energy and resource is replaceable it behoves each occupant of the land to reduce consumption in order to get used to the life of planet preservation we must all now adopt extremely quickly. We largely got rid of cigarette smoking by a combination of health fear (death) and social opprobrium. Most one-time smokers now find the lingering smell of burnt tobacco extremely offensive.

Increasingly there will be articles like Eoin Murray’s ‘From despair to where?’ in the Financial Times of 29Jul19. Governments and Authorities will make and enforce laws that support more sensible planet behaviour. But the ultimate test is what you and I are prepared to do. Are we, for example, prepared to take one-minute shorter showers? Can we train and equip ourselves to be more screen capable and less paper-demanding?

Again, can screen reading programmes, as yet rather undeveloped, be trained to reduce print-outs? Can we insist on packaging that is planet friendly? The ultimate test is how far you and I are prepared to go. While the changes of behaviour I have offered are relatively easy, other changes like going vegan, giving up air-con or switching from the car to the bus, will be a lot harder. Can we consider every consumption with a view to reducing it?

Today’s consumption is tomorrow’s end of life for someone. The rich may keep the aircon high enough to maintain sanity. But surrounded by mad people won’t allow life to be liveable. Siren voices of ‘it’s all happened before and the planet survived’ are wicked and wrong.

When it happened before you didn’t have your BMW, your pool or your long life expectancy.

They will go first if we don’t comply with our one vital compliance.

Concerted Action To Survive (CATS)