THE FUTURE IS NOW.
We need to act boldly against climate change because if we don’t stop burning stuff for example (mostly fossil fuels), our planet is estimated to be 6.5 °F warmer by the time today’s babies turn eighty. What would a 6-7 degree temperature increase mean? For perspective, the last time the planet experienced a 6.5 °F (3.6 °C) difference was the Ice Age. Mind-boggling and absolutely terrifying!
However, the great news is it’s not too late to build the future we want our kids to have. But we need to work together and implement changes this decade.
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Talking about climate change is hard and perhaps even scary. But no problem can be solved without people talking about it. Despite climate experts agreeing that climate change is real, caused by humans, and poses a threat to our children’s ability to live out their natural lives to old age, there is currently shockingly little action—or even conversation.
Meanwhile, We All Need Food and Water (WANFAW) is empowering individuals to take action through equity-based environmental education. We are focusing on climate education because it is the driver of all life on this planet. All other issues humans face on this planet rely on having a livable climate.
Discussing problems is essential to solving enormous problems. This includes the rising global temperature caused by greenhouse gas emissions which threatens human survival. However, most Americans are not talking about climate change. According to the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication, only 39% of adults nationwide discuss climate change at least occasionally. It is even less in the Twin Cities (MN) Metro Area, with only 37% occasionally talking about climate change. We All Need Food And Water recognizes that we will not solve climate change problems without initiating conversations now.
WANFAW’s climate educational programming seeks to jumpstart problem-solving by engaging in conversations with hundreds of people in fun, guilt-free, and family-friendly ways.
Our approach is to gain momentum by creating an energizing, joyful, guilt-free movement that people want to be a part of by continually expanding our partnerships. There is concern about the climate already, and people are looking for ways to act, and not feel overwhelmed. So we need to keep engaging those people—like you! We all need to learn about the climate, pollinators, habitat, and water.
Wondering how to solve the climate crisis?
Check out this scenario simulator!
CREATING A WONDERFUL FUTURE STARTS WITH OUR MINDSETS.
The future hasn’t happened yet, but we have a responsibility to do what is necessary to protect the climate, thereby ensuring a healthy future. As Figueres and Rivett-Carnac wrote in The Future We Choose,
“When it comes to climate change, the vast majority of us have learned a reaction of helplessness. We see the direction the world is headed, and we throw up our hands. … This learned reaction is not only untrue, it’s become fundamentally irresponsible. … We are lucky to be alive at a time when you can make a transformative difference to the future of all life on earth. You are not powerless. In fact, your every action is suffused with meaning, and you are part of the greatest chapter of human achievement in history. Make this your mental mantra.”
No one can do everything.
But everyone can do something.
THE FUTURE IS NOW.
Simple ways to make a dramatic difference
1. Get outside and enjoy the nature around you
The beauty around us still abounds. Look for it. Notice it. Teach your kids to connect with it. Walk. Ride your bike. Turn your community into a walkable “livable” community. We are fortunate to have natural resources to enjoy and protect. So let’s keep it that way.
2. Line Dry Clothes
In the U.S. that means you'll likely reduce your home energy consumption by about 7%. Easy peasy.
3. Limit Hot Water Use
Heating water takes a lot of energy, unless your water is heated by renewables. According to the Union of Concerned Scientists, It requires more water, on average, to generate the electricity for our homes, than the total amount of water we use in our homes for everyday tasks—washing dishes and clothes, showering, flushing toilets, and water lawns and gardens.
4. Practice the R's in Order
Ask yourself how much is enough? What can you borrow, rent, buy second hand? Reject single-serve packaging. Avoid plastic by using tablet toothpaste, bar soap/shampoo, powder laundry detergent in reusable containers. Demand retailers to do better with packaging.
5. Don’t waste food
A lot of energy was made to grow, process, ship, store, and cook your food. Don’t let all that energy and water go to waste! Plus, did you know that a family of four typically wastes $1,500 on food that is thrown away?
All organic material such as vegetable peels and yard waste contain valuable nutrients that should not be squandered.
7. Eat a plant-based diet/lower on the food chain
Today, 60% of the world’s mammals are livestock (largely to feed humans), whereas 36% are humans. This leaves only 4% of the world’s mammals to be wild mammals. (The Guardian, May 2018) Certainly, these numbers reflect our land use and that much of the Earth has been cleared for urban people spaces or grazing areas for livestock to feed people. In conclusion, wild spaces are diminishing rapidly.
8. Support Education for girls & women
Women—especially in developing countries—with educational opportunities tend to be more prosperous and have fewer children. Can you support educating women locally or internationally?
9. Grow (some of) your own food or buy from local farmers’ markets...
where the food hasn’t traveled more than 75 miles or so. If you’re not a gardener, plant apple trees, raspberry, and blueberry bushes instead of traditional landscape plants. If you don’t have a yard, support those markets and/or grow some greens in your windowsill.
10. Support Electrification + Equitable transportation
Bike lanes, mass transit, ride-shares, car-sharing, electric vehicles, increased numbers of charging stations. There is a lot of work to be done in this area. Support politicians and policies that advance clean —and equitable—transportation. This also protects the climate from the adverse effect of burning fuel.
11. Support Energy Conservation + Renewables
Smart building (i.e. passive houses) can eliminate about half of our home energy use. The other half can be supplied by renewables. Besides rooftop solar, there are many ways to support community solar and wind projects. Start by seeing what your energy company provides.
12. Plant native flowers
The flowers will support the bees that will pollinate your fruits and vegetable gardens. They also protect the climate. Visit https://bwsr.state.mn.us/lawns-legumes to find out about grants and BlueThumb.org for how-to information.