I cannot sit back and watch the world boil over while I am waiting to see if it will. I think we all need to do all we can, not only with our personal lifestyle choices, but in order to change the path of the world’s leaders. Last week my friend and I agreed that the glacial pace of government is slower than the rate of glacier melting. It is an appalling response to an emergency.
So one piece of what I want to do as my own response is to share a little story every Friday about what I and my friends are doing and discovering about climate action. I want to speak out on Friday because Fridays for the Future, instigated by Greta Thunberg, calls kids to a school strike every week until governments (adults in general) start doing something. I am on their side.
This week’s story is an easy pick. It is about Greta at the Youth4Climate event last Tuesday that preceded the PreCOP26 meeting in Milan which began yesterday. These summits are intricate but we’d better catch up on what is going on, since they are the biggest things happening, government-wise, to stop the warming. A COP is a “conference of parties” in United-Nations-speak. The 26th annual COP on climate change will take place in Glasgow in November. COP21 in Paris in 2015 was the big one so far. In Paris the parties agreed to limit global warming to well below 2 degrees and aim for 1.5 degrees, to adapt to the impacts of a changing climate and to make money available to deliver on these aims. That was the first time in 21 years something significant resulted. That’s the agreement from which Trump withdrew and Biden rejoined.
Greta Thunberg is an inspiring leader. At the Youth4Climate event she used her fame to demand action: “Thirty years of blah, blah, blah is too much. Your promises are empty. You are destroying our dreams. It is time for the polluters to pay.” Type in #GretaThunberg most any day and it will take you to a Twitter feed full of #ClimateAction. If you need Bible inspiration, here it is.
I’ve only been to two Friday strike events. But they helped set me on a course toward doing my part – for my grandchildren, for sure. There are amazing people all over the world, many of them in high school and most not out of their thirties, who are on the frontline of this terrible battle humanity is facing whether they want to face it or not.