You must be willing to set aside the cultural norms by which you currently live if global warming prevention is important to you. You must accept that you and everyone you know must sooner or later learn to live on a fraction of the energy you currently consume. But most importantly, you can raise awareness of global warming right now so others like you can make a difference, too. We need to make these changes swiftly if we are to avoid a climate catastrophe.
We are extinguishing the Earth’s biodiversity and degrading most ecosystems, creating a bleak future for ourselves. The earth is large, but finite. The result of the enormous human population and the environmental impact of our current way of life is tremendous, and cannot be ignored. But you can help stop global warming.
These tips will empower you to help prevent global warming. There are numerous ways in which our learning to live with less will take place; The following tips discuss some of the most potent possibilities, in that implementing them will cut out or reduce some of your most significant personal contributions to climate change:
Tip 1. Sell Your Car
Motor fuel accounts for 60% of carbon emissions over the past 20 years. In 1999 The transportation sector overtook Industry as the biggest producer of carbon emissions in the United States, according to the Energy Information Administration. Yup, the past century of personal motorized travel has been a very convenient, luxurious, and enjoyable demonstration of grossly unsustainable human activity. You are responsible for these emissions in various ways direct and indirect, but the biggest behavioral culprit under your closest control is your personal transportation.
It’s easier than you think!
There are so many hidden benefits when you decide to stop driving. Think about it:
- Zero insurance costs. It’s safer for everybody
- Zero repair costs. No more stress at the mechanic
- Far fewer emissions if you take public transportation or car-share
- You’ll be healthier by walking and biking more
Car Free Solution 1:
Joining a car co-op is a simple way to reduce your impact from personal transportation. In fact, car co-ops now operate in a growing number of cities around the world. Find the closest car sharing option to you. Start your own car sharing co-op to help with global warming prevention if there is no car sharing going on in your area. It’s a breeze to set up!
Car Free Solution 2:
Public transport dramatically cuts your emissions from personal vehicle use. In fact, one could argue public transit is the only reasonable, long-term solution to the majority of our transport needs. It is slowly improving as US cities confront the impacts of an infrastructure built around cars and trucks. It will only get better when you demand adequate services; vote with your feet (and bring all your friends!) to demonstrate the need. As you will read next, transportation in general has a lot to do with global warming– including the transportation of food.
If you must drive, then when choosing a vehicle, make mileage efficiency the top factor and start working now on any changes you need to make in your life to let you get rid of your car as soon as possible.
Tip 2. Buy Local, Eat Local
Local farmers’ markets are a great opportunity to help prevent global warming directly, increase local food security, and support your local economy. You may have noticed the proliferation of farmer’s markets around the country over the past decade or so. This is not just a quaint fad. When you buy local (and this goes for anything, not just produce), you support local, sustainable economic growth by keeping farmers and other primary producers at work, and your money working to bolster your local economy instead of supporting executives and corporate investors.
Food shipment has a serious cost, both ecologically and financially; the average meal on your plate in the US has traveled 2000 miles to get to you. This helps to explain why every calorie of food you consume costs an average of ten calories of energy to produce. That imbalance is a major contributor to global warming, pouring carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere at a far greater rate than the oceans and vegetation can store or reprocess them.
So get your food from your local area! Here is a great resource to help you eat more locally.
When you make these vital changes, you don’t just reduce greenhouse gas emissions. You also encourage a more stable economy and a diverse business market. And while you probably can’t eliminate processed and imported goods from your life tomorrow, the more needs you can meet locally the more you reduce your carbon footprint and decrease global warming. As you’re probably realizing, becoming a local citizen is among the best ways to reduce your impact.
Tip 3. Your Local Government
You must help shift global warming into the mainstream. Not until you as an active citizen demand that we prevent global warming will the government move to act on it in a meaningful way. No politician interested in re-election is going to sponsor the kind of legislation required to alleviate our massive responsibility for global warming without an organized citizenry pushing for better climate legislation. Influencing the federal government on this issue may seem daunting, but you can get your local government to help with global warming prevention much more easily.
Tip 4. Influence Your Place of Work
Another great way to help prevent global warming is by getting your place of work to adopt more energy efficient technologies like these photoluminescent exit signs. They use a lot less energy, are made from recycled aluminum (and are recyclable), and are not toxic or radioactive, meaning they are much safer. If you work in an office building, talk to your co-workers about replacing the signs you have now with these; they’re less expensive than the other kinds of signs and are a very cost-effective step towards going green.
Your personal action matters. Sell your car, buy your food from local sources, and pressure your governments to act. Be vocal with friends, family, and strangers alike about why you’re making these changes, and what is at stake. By now you know the full effects of climate change. But do you have the courage to make real changes in your life? It’s not too late. You can even help right now.
Author: Brown, Nathan. A Cooler Climate, 2008.