If mocktails aren’t your cup of petroleum, then imagine, today, somebody knocks on your door and tells you your house will soon burn down. They say that come five years, if you don’t change your daily habits, you will no longer have a place to live. Knowing you have the power and opportunity to alter the bleak future of your home, what would you do?
A. Buy a protective barrier for your fireplace
B. Replace your faulty kitchen appliances
C. Both A and B
D. Host community-wide seances, using hundreds of candles on a hardwood floor scattered with half-extinguished cigarette butts and glasses of “tar-tinis”
The necessary precautions seem obvious. But suppose your home was planet Earth and you were the human race. What might you do then?
Here’s one answer. We’ve been warned by scientists worldwide that if we don’t start taking considerable action against climate change — forcefully reducing greenhouse gas emissions and expanding sources of renewable energy — there will be drastic and dangerous complications. We’ve known this for years. And yet, according to a 2019 report by the Global Carbon Project, total carbon dioxide emissions reached an all-time high in 2019. Yes, you read that correctly: an all-time high. Emissions growth did slow — 0.6% in 2019 compared to 2.1% in 2018 — but this kind of gradual progression is simply no longer an option. We need drastic reduction, and fast.
Experts have written exhaustively on the many ways we can fight climate change, and, after decades of research and technological innovation, there’s no shortage of possible solutions or strategies to help mitigate it. What society seriously lacks, however, is care. If we’ve learned anything since discovering the startling reality of climate change, it is that its resolution requires personal engagement. We must treat Earth like a friend in distress — like an ailing loved one, not a bitter ex.
So, I’d like to propose a toast: to rekindling our relationship with Earth. It’s long overdue.
Contact Jericho Rajninger at [email protected].