Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Blog Action Day: Climate Change

It's Blog Action Day. Almost 8000 bloggers are writing today about a cause that impacts all of us and quite literally, the world we live in.

I'm not going to get all scientific and political on you. I happen to think the environment isn't a political issue. I will, however, be brazen and tell you that I think you're a fool (which is nice speak for "idiot") if you think the planet is not in peril. And you are a parasite if you're doing nothing to protect it from the likes of well, you.

I know people who don't recycle. They claim they don't because the government can't make them do anything. So I'm guessing they don't wear seat belts or refrain from acting on delusional murderous thoughts too. Oh, and I bet they don't pay taxes since the government can't make them. Of course, Uncle Sam will track their asses down when money is concerned. So until there is a penalty, these people will not recycle simply as an act of defiance. I say it's doltish. A simple act of obtuse ignorance. Worse than that even, these people know that recycling is the right, responsible thing to do, yet they don't as their lame retaliation to "big government."

I also know people who think all this talk about global warming and climate change is a bunch of bunk. They believe it's all hooey and media hype. These folks figure the earth has been around for billions of years and isn't going anywhere. And apparently the earth is flat and mood rings really work. It must be easy to live in a shroud of callow fog.

What worries me is that these people are my peers, educated adults who have children and relish the many adventures to be had in the great outdoors. I always say "I hate nature." I say it under my breath and in jest, of course. What I mean is that I am terrified of snakes, creepy crawlies, critters and I detest dirt. I happen to love nature when experienced from a rocker on a porch with a Hendrick's & tonic in my hand. Yet I recycle and live as green a life as I can muster to do my part to save nature. These other folks of whom I speak actually sleep in nature and frolic on kayaks and skis and boats. Yet they don't value the earth and environment in which such frolicking ensues.

Ignorance can be rectified. But how to battle apathy?

I'm no scientist but I can tell you that based on everything I have read, seen, or otherwise consumed, climate change is real. This isn't a political issue; it's a human one.

Our parents and their parents before them, shared the desire to make their children's lives better than theirs. I think it's a common, if unwritten, theme of parenthood. Don't we want to make things better for the generation behind us? Is it not in fact our duty to leave the earth a better, cleaner, safer, saner place than we found it?

I know that I want my sons to know what amazing creatures roam our planet. Whether I actually want to see them up close and personal is another story. I want them to have access to the glorious riches of Mother Nature. I want them to frolic in the water and sands and mountains and meadows. Without a gas mask or chemical warfare suit. Think I'm freely tossing out hyperbole? Well, you're wrong. We have done irreparable harm to the planet, our Mother, our provider. Our folly and hubris will leave us eating crow. Except we'll find that that too is extinct.

On this day, October 14, 2009, Blog Action Day, I urge you to brush up on the real ways climate change affects us today and generations to come after us. I challenge you to find three ways you can live a greener, more sustainable life. I can certainly do more, but here's how I started:

  • Join a CSA to eat organic, local produce (and let's not forget tasty!).
  • Reuse grocery bags and be vigilant about bringing your own bags everywhere.
  • Wash and reuse plastic food containers and zipper plastic bags.
  • Pack lunches in reusable containers. Trust me, your kids will bring them home. Your husband might not.
  • Switch to cloth napkins.
  • Grow your own veggies (I, Queen of the Brown Thumbs - literally and figuratively, even had a bounty this year!)
  • Be vigilant about recycling - no cardboard container should go in the trash.
  • Don't use the garbage disposal.
  • Keep pesticides off your lawn. Set a new paradigm for what a healthy lawn looks like.
  • Use those funny shaped LED light bulbs.
  • Keep the temp at 80 in the summer like I do (If nothing else, it discourages house guests.).
  • Ditch the leaf blower and use a rake!
  • Walk more, drive less.
  • Carpool.
  • Wash laundry only when you have a full load.
  • Steer clear of any products that contain pesticides.
  • Use chemical-free cleansers.
  • Reuse wrapping, tissue paper, and gift bags.
  • Buy local and seasonal; tomatoes in November taste like crap and aren't worth their carbon footprint!
  • Use the library.
  • Swap clothes and household items with friends.
In aggregate, every single little thing we do makes an enormous impact. It's not just a lousy cliche. Perspective, people. Just like your one vote, it matters. Look, it's not hard. It's not a crippling change for your family. It's easy to get the kids on board.

After all, this is for them.

Love Your Mother.

Blog Action Day: Climate ChangeSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend


Cheryl said...

What an inspiring, informative piece! I disagree with one point, however. The Earth WILL always be here -the blockheads aren't wrong about that. Humankind, however, will not.

Magpie said...

Good list. And for Northerners, turn down your thermostat in the winter.

Anonymous said...

Amen, sister! I don't GET people who act so heinously towards the environment. You'd think they'd APPRECIATE fresh air, water, etc. I believe that their sense of entitlement must run VERY deep.

Anonymous said...

Here via Maggie, raising my glass of Hendrick's and Tonic to you. I have to say that I feel pretty good because I do all this stuff on your list, mostly because as a SAHM I have plenty of time and I have to be frugal. OK, except for using my car less, but there really is no public transport & my kids are young.