Summer of 2012: North Americans Begin to Harvest Climate Chaos They’ve Sown

A friend and newly graduated family physician told us a story about a young man who came to his clinic for medical advice. The young man was having a hard time adjusting to being away from home for the first time, and to his first full-time job, and was considering quitting and returning home. Our friend’s advice to this young man was to take two “man-up” pills every morning, and hang in there for a while longer.

I’m not going to comment on the medical validity of this advice, but it does seem to me that it’s good advice for all of us in North America these days. We are starting to reap what we’ve sown, with our callous disregard of the ecosystem that gives us life. Human beings need clean water, clean air, and a stable climate to thrive, and we’ve put all of these in peril with our burning of fossil fuels and our political apathy. Our relentless search for harder and harder to access oil has led to mountain tops being blasted off for coal, the poisoning of our aqueducts to frack for natural gas, and the destruction of the Canadian boreal forests in search of bitumen from tar sands. It’s hard to accept responsibility for this – we all love our children and work tirelessly to keep them safe in the short-term. Yet it’s time for parents and grandparents to take two “man-up” pills each and every morning, and to actively work to salvage a livable climate and planet for future generations. It’s our inter-generational responsibility, our “Great Work”. Hopelessness, apathy and cynicism are luxuries our children cannot afford.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b0NrS2L6KcE]

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Not sure how to respond? Check out Citizens Climate Lobby, The Transition Network, orĀ  the Post Carbon Institute, or go to my Action not Apathy page.

More links:

Global Drought Monitor

Actions Speak Louder Than Words As Earth First! Shuts Down Gas Drilling in Western PA

Climate Scientist Heidi Cullen On The “C-Word”

Climate Quote of the Day:

But even though we don’t have all the answers — and maybe never will — we do know enough to act. And that is really the bigger point, the one I try to bring home when the phone rings. The recent National Research Council’s “America’s Climate Choices” report advised Congress that we know enough to get started on preparing for climate change and preventing the most severe consequences, and we need to get started right away. Almost anything we do to protect ourselves in the future from this hotter world we’re creating, will also protect us right now from many of the extremes Mother Nature throws at us. We can’t afford to wait.

Heidi Cullen, Climate Scientist in an article in today’s Huffington Post, The C-Word

Joplin, Missouri tornado damage

More links:

Climate Central