The editorial “Looking for the Silver Lining” was a great start on assessing changes due to shelter-in-place that we may want to make our “new normal.”
A silver lining for many of us is the time to reflect on the trajectory of our planet's health and to imagine the world that we want to leave to future generations. History shows us that massive changes can occur in the relative blink of an eye if there is popular support for them. Disruptions are huge risks to our health, economy, education, and social fabric. What lessons has the immediate COVID-19 crisis taught us that apply to the climate crisis? Here's my short list:
1. Pay attention to scientists and heed their warnings and advice. Solutions to the climate crisis are readily available – Project Drawdown, Foundation for Climate Restoration, Climate Interactive, Climate Restoration, Climate Works Foundation. What is urgently needed is the political will and funding to put these solutions in place within the next 10 years, in time to “flatten the curve” of global temperature rise.
2. At times of disaster, humans pull together across many barriers to work for the common good. Innovation is often born of crisis, as we have seen in so many examples with COVID-19. Let's use this same out-of-the-box thinking and disaster-relief funding to propel us towards a sustainable energy future.
3. It’s imperative to act decisively as soon as a threat presents itself and remediation measures are well understood. The massive changes needed to safeguard our biosphere are complex and involve negotiation and the commitment of many stakeholders. It's time to roll up our sleeves!
4. We can have a healthy economy and stave off the climate crisis at the same time. It all boils down to priorities. Instead of subsidizing the fossil fuel industry, we can invest health, the green economy, and education for the greater good of all beings.
Please join Citizen’s Climate Education and Dr. Ashley McClure, of Climate Health Now, at 7 p.m., May 19, for an interactive Zoom presentation from a healthcare provider’s perspective. Join "Community Climate Solutions" on https://werenew.net and weigh options for your family actions. Together, we can cheer each other on as we create a more sustainable and healthy future.