Let’s wave goodbye to 2021, and the many climate catastrophes from this past year that Mother Nature demanded we see, feel, hear and experience first hand. From deadly flooding in Germany, New York City and British Columbia, to fires raging across the Amazon, California, British Columbia, the Arctic, as well as Boulder, Colorado – the realities of living the climate emergency were made crystal clear to us all – as was our staring role in pushing Mother Nature out of balance. While this reality is critical to realize and to understand, this post is NOT about the fact that the climate crisis is here, this should be a given to all.
THIS post, in the early days of 2022 is a reminder that there are so many things happening each and every day – in cities, countries, boardrooms and kitchens – that address, come to terms with, and slow down our climate emergency. These actions, projects, programs and events build our resiliency, inside and out, as we learn the skills and find the resources to cope and adjust to the changes around us. We need to find ways to remind ourselves that we can and must have climate hope. Hope can’t manifest itself in a vacuum but it can grow from real life experiences and examples which in turn, build our self efficacy and our agency that moves us forward and wills us to act.
This post is a reminder that people around the world, from all walks and corners of life, are awake to the dangers we face and are facing them head on – more often than not doing so in community, together.
This post is to remind you, so you can remind the children in your life that – around the world – people are rising up, as they see what is happening and are taking action where and when they can. As well, they are demanding that those who can go big, do so now.
This post is a reminder for you to rise and be part of these collective actions. Together we are strong and together we can and are making a difference.
Where to begin? Look for the successes – below is a small handful – you will not have to look hard to find fistfuls of your own, from the world over:
- On our Climate Mamas and Papas front: Our Kids Climate and Parents for Future joined together this past summer to launch a global parent fellowship. There will be a new program launching in 2022 – an idea for you or someone you know? This program and the growing and loud voices of parents around the world, coming together at key moments (COP26), Mothers Day, Father Days, to raise attention to the reality of the climate emergency and the need for action.
- On the importance of free and fair elections: Joe Biden, the US President understands the realities of the climate crisis. Creating and advancing climate policy isn’t easy, but on his first day in office he showed the world where his priorities for the country are, as he insured that the US rejoined the Paris Agreement. He cancelled the Keystone pipeline, once and for all, and his administration has demanded of all federal government agencies that climate action take priority. The trillion dollar infrastructure bill passed in the fall, with a razor sharp focus on climate resiliency. How we vote MATTERS, protecting our right to VOTE and the democratic process is critical.
- On sharing positive news: The role of indigenous peoples in protecting and caring for our mother earth continues to be amplified and recognized. Rolling out in the fall of 2021, New Jersey began enacting its decision to teach climate change K-12, across 7 cross curricular areas. California passes a bill that requires all businesses and residents to compost, rolling out in 2022~
There are so many, many projects and programs that took flight and grew in 2021, including and related to: energy efficiency, renewable energy, regenerative agriculture, climate education K-12, systems thinking, divestment from polluting industries, investment in climate action plans, cradle to cradle, donut economics, recognition, reality, and ways to cope with climate/eco anxiety amongst youth and adults and so much more!! All this as the world continued to reel from the COVID crisis. We can do so much when we put our minds, our energies, our hopes, and our dreams toward creating a better future and now for us and for our children.
What are some of your key positive takeaways from 2021 as they relate to the climate emergency? Let’s acknowledge them, champion them, and move them forward into 2022. We can all be witnesses too and participants with the companies, organizations, houses of worship, elected officials, mamas and papas, youth and children, uniting to address our climate emergency, and doing so head on with eyes wide open and arms outstretched!
Yours in solidarity,
Your Climate Mama, Harriet
P.S. on a personal note, in 2021 my book, How to Talk to Your Kids About Climate Change, Turning Angst into Action, received 3 national book awards. To me, this shows that talking about the climate crisis – more and more – is taking center stage.
Parent photo from COP26, Our Kids Climate.