Yesterday I was scouring the internet for a funny-ish climate/sustainability story to round out the news on this month's edition of The Low Carbon Agenda when I came across this one: a therapist has set up Good Grief, an AA-style programme for those depressed about climate change. I came within a gnat's whisker of taking the mick out of such new-agey nonsense when I saw the story of the plight of the Great Barrier Reef. The first paragraph of this almost sent me searching for a UK branch of Good Grief.
Climate and Sustainability issues can be quite overwhelming and the steady flow of bad news can be not just depressing but paralysing. And if we do nothing, we're just a rabbit sat in the road staring at the headlights.
So, what can we do? Here are few things I do:
- Search out and share good news: there's some really big progress being made out there - the collapse of the coal industry, the explosion of renewables, the emergence of good electric cars. This reinforces the feeling that we can do something.
- Do something: I was so put off by the holier-than-thou attitude of my local environmental campaign group 20 years ago, I went and joined BTCV and planted more than 400 trees - that felt really good. Buy a bike (and use it instead of the car), stick some extra insulation in the loft, get some more efficient lightbulbs, holiday in the same country a bit more, take the kids pond-dipping – whatever floats your boat.
- Do something at work: if your work isn't taking Sustainability seriously, then ask a few loaded questions. One of my clients tells the story of how his CEO was welcoming a group of new graduates. At the end of his speech, he asked for questions. A hand shot up: "Where do I plug in my electric car?" They are now getting charging points.
- Invest in the future: when The Donald was elected across the pond, I immediately went and made a modest investment in a wind farm. Take that, Trumpster!
None of these things are going to solve the climate crisis on their own. But what they do is get you off the sofa of despair and on to the front foot. Being proactive is good for the planet and your own wellbeing.
[I can't find the owner of the great pic I've used above - if it's your's, let me know]