Are you concerned about climate change?
Do you wish that you as an individual could have more of a positive impact on climate change and the planet? Well, you are not alone according to a Yale University global survey, so do most people in 31 surveyed countries. As individuals, we feel that we can have little or no impact on such a massive planet-wide problem. However, according to Project Drawdown after years of study and data collection, you might have a bigger impact than you think.
According to Drawdown Solutions (the research arm of Project Drawdown) individual and household changes can have a 25-30% impact on dangerous greenhouse gases. The massive bottom-up surge of individual action can also induce businesses and organizations to consider their damaging emissions.
In the table below, Drawdown Solutions identifies some of the most impactful actions you can take. Most of you are probably doing these anyway, so feel good about what you are doing and do more of it. Notice our eating and food purchasing habits have some of the biggest individual impacts.
Yes, these solutions are the solutions of rich nations, that is because rich nations are creating 90% of the problem – consequently, the biggest impacts can be made here.
The Sixth Assessment Report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC6) says it is an “all solutions on deck” situation and that all of us can take action to make a difference. The true impact here comes from making these solutions accessible to more and more people. Take the single action of eating a plant-rich diet, you may feel that eating less meat is only having an effect within your four walls. But your actions influence others to create documentaries, news, and social media segments – these segments circulate individual actions and spread them to others who also feel that their actions are less than impactful. It creates demand which increases the amount of produce your grocer carries, it makes composting easier, it makes it cheaper for more people to have higher quality produce – the effects multiply. So be concerned about climate change and know that your individual actions are indeed making a difference.
Credit for the facts in this article is given to Chad Frischmann, Crystal Chissell and Project Drawdown.
— by Kelly B. Webb, Class of 201, SWS Stewardship Committee Co-Lead & Board Member