When Ripple Effect Artists produced the play 2071: The World We’ll Leave Our Grandchildren we quite literally thought about the world we are leaving for our future generations. We examined our personal climate impact and decided that sadly there was no neutral position any more. We had to examine our personal choices and today we want to give you a little peek into what we think we need to do today in order to leave a better world by 2071.
Our Food Choices
Why not dive right into the deep end, our food choices. According to an Ipsos poll, nearly 89% US residents identify as meat eaters which means that they consume meat for at least one meal. This may seem harmless, irrelevant or even essential to their diet but the climate impact of eating meat is becoming hard to ignore. Beef alone produces 50kg of greenhouses gases for every 3.5oz of protein. Lamb produces the next highest emissions but they are at least 50% lesser than beef. I don’t know about you but these figures definitely made us question our dietary choices.
Our Shopping Habits
We live in a world where denying ourselves and making choices just does not exist anymore. Whatever our price range, everything our hearts desire is available in some capacity or the other. The clothing sector represents around 10% of our carbon emissions and the more we glorify fast fashion, the worse that number will get. We are not saying that you should exclusively buy more expensive brands but that you and be mindful about the choices you make. You can plan your wardrobe by making “outfits” and not buy individual pieces. This way you will always know whether something you want to purchase is a good choice or not. The other trick is to limit yourself to certain months of the year, sales or better yet, force yourself to sleep on it for at least two days or even a week before you make a purchase. This way your choices will begin to head towards sustainability. What’s better, you may even save more! Win, win all around!
Our Travel Traditions
Living in this global world as we do, we have become accustomed to taking two to three vacations abroad a year. You are of course entitled to spend your money as you see fit but you see, aircrafts operate exclusively on fossil fuels. So yes, we may all want to believe by doing well in the two categories above, we have earned the right to that one little vacation in Italy but I’m afraid I have disappointing news for you. Although solar powered flights are showing some promise, we are quite a few years away from winning this one. You may want to think about your travel traditions, for example, if you go skiing in Europe every year, you may want to consider changing that to every alternate year to start a pattern of habits that will benefit your children. This is possibly the hardest habit to break but by taking baby steps, we can all get there!
Our Daily Commute
I know what you’re thinking, this just gets worse with every category! You’re right but like we said this does not have to be done all at once. We are now living in a world of hybrid work schedules anyway but if you need to go in everyday due to the nature of your job, consider doing a carpool. That way you can also drive in that amazing carpool lane and skip the nauseatingly long lines of traffic. You can read about some more fantastic benefits of carpooling here.
Have Your Say
This is the part where we encourage you to stay in touch with your local political and sustainable developments. If you do not know what is happening, you can’t hold your local government responsible. Keep an eye on their plans for investing in clean energy options and how they handle recycling. Take every opportunity to make your voice heard through every opinion poll and survey they send out. That way they know you are watching and listening and they feel motivated to do better.
To conclude, inspire this change. We recognize that everything we read and watch on the news can feel scary but taking control of your attitude and behavior will make all the difference in the world. You will begin to feel better about everything when you make little changes!