Monday, 7 January 2019

2019: Have we reached Peak Climate Concern?

Happy 2019!

Let's hope so. Like many others I wasn't sorry to see the back of 2018 - a year of record drought, wildfires raging across the planet, shocking stories of refugees displaced directly or indirectly because of climate breakdown. All of which was topped off by October's 2018 IPPC report that said if we are to limit global warming to 1.5°C we have to implement “rapid and far-reaching” transitions in land, energy, industry, buildings, transport, and cities within the next 12 years.

I could barely bring myself to follow news of the crowning thorn in a brutal year for environment, the COP24 summit. It was held in Katowice Poland, - a city that was literally built on coal mining and steel and featuring fringe events attempting to build the case for fossil fuels in energy adaptation.

Was this ironic or an attempt at inclusivity? I'm not sure. But out of all this I did find bright signs, actions that were both inspirational and, it seems far reaching.

These signs are important because they help to show us that we're not alone, the care and concern we feel is shared by many, many others, and that out of this concern there are new ways to invigorate our collective struggle for climate justice, ways that build bridges across generations, countries and political persuasion.

It makes me wonder (hope?) that we're witnessing a collective shift in attention to the need for transition and more importantly, the need for our political establishments to step up to the plate and show true leadership.

Here are my top 5 YAY moments from the past year...

April 2018: 3 COAL FREE days for the UK

December 2018: 15 year old Greta Thunberg speaks truth to power at COP 24

Extinction Rebellion: a people's movement that has gone from a few dozen people in October 2018 to a global movement covering over 30 countries in 2019

The rewilding of Knepp Castle - an inspirational reminder of how resilient the planet is..

Fracking is failing - signs that the industry is on the back foot...

OK call me an optimist, and there's certainly no room for complacency, but can you honestly read and watch these links without feeling just a teeny bit hopeful?

Let's use the hope to feed our focus over the coming year!

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