I usually post a year-end review of climate stories about now, but it seems it’s already been done, and done well, by others. Please check out these articles by:
So, let’s turn this blog’s New Year’s tradition on it’s head.
Next Year in Climate Change
We know about last year–what we don’t know about is this coming year. What might happen? What goals can we set? What plans can we make?
I’ve noticed that many people have a great deal of difficulty personalizing climate-related goals. It’s easy to say “we need to be carbon neutral by 2050 (or 2040 or 2030),” but who exactly is “we”? And if “we” turns out to be no particular person, some vague, unenforceable collective, then who is going to do anything about climate change?
The fact of the matter is, only a goal that starts with “I” can be accomplished except by happy accident.
So in the interests of having a productive new year for everything that matters, here are a couple of possible goals for the new year, by way of example.
- I will give time and money every month to political candidates committed to climate action.
- I will spend one day per week standing on a street corner with a sign reading “climate action now.”
- I will identify a specific change that needs to be made by a specific company or government organization and I will publicly demand that change be made.
- I will reduce my own carbon footprint by at least 10%.
- I will talk to at least one stranger about climate issues every week.
- I will brainstorm with others how we can make our community more sustainable this year.
These are not necessarily my goals for the year–I’m still working out my plans. But notice how each one begins with “I will,” and that each is unambiguous. If I made any of these my goals, and didn’t do it by the end of the year, I’d know. That’s in sharp contrast to something vague, like “I will fight for climate action,” which could mean anything or nothing.
So, what does your upcoming year look like?