This weekend, I had the chance to talk with a young woman, who is very intelligent, very educated, very committed to science. I asked her how we could get the younger community engaged in helping the Town to bend the Climate Curve; how do we inspire the kind of energy that they are putting into Social Equity, given that climate is the ultimate social equity issue.
This person told me that, in her experience, young people feel overwhelmed by the Climate Challenge. Yes, they understand that is important, but they think there is nothing one person can do, and they think that the problem is so big, anything they do won’t make a difference.
I get these feelings; and I suspect that they are not confined to the young! In truth, even to me, a confessed climate zealot, I wonder how we will ever come together and do what we need to do. The Climate Challenge is the ultimate Community Challenge. That is, the only way we are going to be able to make the needed change is if are able to come together, and work together, in the interests of all.
Then I remember what Nelson Mandela said, thinking about the struggles of the people of South Africa in the face of Apartheid; “It always seems impossible - until it’s done.”
I am watching, right now, another conversation. The National Academy of Medicine is broadcasting its Annual meeting for the first time to anybody, and for free. They are talking about their focus, now, on the two great challenges facing humanity - (1) the Covid virus and the need to rebuild our public health system, and (2) the need to overcome the climate crisis. They are launching their Second Grand Challenge - to protect human health by combatting climate change. They are asking the US Healthcare System to reduce its carbon footprint 50% by 2030.
If they can do it, surely, we can similarly come together and do our part.
Tonight, the Candidates for the Town Council will present to us their best thinking about how to lead Fairfax. We all need to listen, and to think about the kind of world we want to create.
Tomorrow, the Town of Fairfax Climate Action Committee will have its monthly meeting - and we welcome everyone to share your ideas.
On November 9, the Climate Action Committee will host its next Climate Emergency Conversation, talking about what we can do to make our transportation choices cleaner.
Join the conversation.
Do not give up.
It always looks impossible.
Until its done.