We Took So Much for Granted

We Took So Much for Granted We took so much for granted. So much was just a given. The trees, the bees, the fish in the sea, the air, the ocean rhythms …the seasons…clean water…and all the animals: the lizards, squirrels, birds, raccoons, the grand majestic animals…even the insects. They were always here and will always be here just like us humans. No, it’s not a given anymore - all that given is under question. We thought we could keep…

One thing you can do – the seventh in a series of short essays

Time to Care about our Planet One never knows for sure, but I think that when my time is up, I will probably go gentle into that good night. I won’t fight. However, in the meantime, regarding living and particularly regarding our planet earth in dire need of help, I certainly will not go gentle into that good night. I am not resigned. I am not like those images of trapped animals right before being slaughtered and bowing their heads…

One thing you can do – the sixth in a series of short essays

How Many People Really Get It? How many people really get it? I mean when you read the words, “We only have 12 years to save the planet,” it can so easily just sound like words and doesn’t really penetrate. It can sound like some new fantasy science fiction movie. Really? Can it be true that our only home is possibly doomed? And yet it’s true. I don’t mean we will all perish in 12 years, but it’s going to…

“One Thing You Can Do” – the fifth in a series of short essays

Uplifting the Spirit Anyone who is engaging with climate activism, no doubt, gets discouraged at times. It doesn’t mean that one stops engaging and responding, but because of how big and new this climate challenge is and how much resistance, avoidance and denial there is, it isn’t always easy to stay uplifted in spirit. When something does happen however, like the sunrise movement, there is an opening into hope and possibility, a renewal of spirit and desire to respond even…

“One Thing You Can Do” – The Fourth in a series of short essays

Responding in the Biggest Possible Way The New Deal was a response to the Great Depression of 1932.  Because the USA was in such dire straits, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, responded with policies and programs that were in many ways radical. It has been referred to as the 3 R’s –relief, recovery and reform. Relief for the poor and unemployed, recovery of the economy and reform of the financial system.   Fast forward to 2018, and we now have a…

“One Thing You Can Do” – the third in a series of short essays

Don't Look Away Please don’t look away. If you only have one thing to do, look at a wonderful blog site like the Yale Climate Change Communications website (http://climatecommunication.yale.edu/) or Grist (https://grist.org/) where one can read articles on or in response to climate change, listen to  podcasts or watch a short video. Or one can read a book on climate that grabs your attention, and even if it gets difficult, keep reading it to the end. Don’t stop; don’t look…

“One Thing You Can Do” – the second in a series of short essays

Stop by Uli Nagel One thing we can do is to stop. Try not to turn away from the uncertainty of our human future. It’s easy to escape from the real, big picture. Even activism, I found, can be a way to escape: reminding friends to off-set their carbon footprint, practicing self-care, attending protests, donating to Greenpeace, riding my bike to work, inventing a new gadget. We are really busy and want to think we are doing our part. Yet,…

“One Thing You Can Do” – the first in a series of short essays inspired by the New York Times

Jump in Wholeheartedly As someone who is relatively new in responding to our climate breakdown, the one thing I would recommend for those who are concerned is to find organizations that you feel a connection with and/or write to individuals that you admire, who are doing work to sustain life, and ask their advice on what you can do. I give myself as an example.  After seeing a film called “Planetary,” which begins with a few astronauts looking down at…

Impressions from the Global Climate Action Summit by Uli Nagel

Impressions from the Global Climate Action Summit We usually don’t think much about the difference between linear and exponential functions unless they fall within the realm of our work. More over it’s hard for us to grasp exponential change. It doesn’t come naturally. If we want to combat climate change though, we need to. That was the message at the Global Climate Action Summit, an event hosted by California’s governor Jerry Brown: if the world’s greenhouse gas emissions peak in…

Beyond Hope or Despair

Beyond Hope or Despair There is something beyond both hope or despair in response to the dilemma of climate change or climate breakdown, a term that the British journalist, George Monbiot recently coined.  When I hear people saying, yes, there is still hope, we must have hope, when what is being described seems so devoid of hope, then recently I find it grating to my ears. It just does not ring true to reality. The fear by many is that…