When talking about low impact living, sustainability and the benefits of organic or locally sourced produce, the first response is often "it's more expensive though, isn't it?" This behaviour needs altering and perspectives shifted in order to really get any work done when it comes to progress.
Right now, the world is speaking louder than ever before about the environment and our responsibility to make significant changes towards improving its future. In towns, villages and cities across the world, there are communities who are creating, adapting and improving their habits in line with a more sustainable way of life. Some have been working tirelessly towards these goals for many years, some have joined in only recently, but there is no judgement, only encouragement and support for those involved.
For most of the population, however they live outside such communities, their worlds are more insular and they are busy with the demanding lives that the 21st century requires of them. It can be frustrating that some still don't understand the importance of sustainable and low impact living, but judging them for living a life that was taught to them by previous generations consumer behaviours gets us nowhere. Education is our largest platform, we are nothing as a species without knowledge and information - accessing the right information from the best sources is key, rather than relying on snippets from opinion based articles and/or news with headlines designed to grab attention.
Being ill-informed can open us up to assumption, which can lead to opinion, one of which is that renewable, low impact, zero waste, organic etc. is a more expensive way of life - as with everything, it is all relative. Where do you choose to spend your money? When choosing a low impact lifestyle, that inherently comes with necessary sacrifices which in turn save money. To truly make a difference, sacrifices have to be made by all of us, especially in developed countries, in the form of consumer habit change. We have the power to impact the environment through the choices we make - convenience and love of nice things shouldn't be the reason for our planet's demise.
Kofi Annan, Former Secretary-General of United Nations and co-recipient of 2001 Nobel Piece Prize
Knowledge is power. Information is liberating. Education is the premise of progress, in every society, in every family.
It can certainly be tempting to "google" keywords or phrases, then rely on the most attention grabbing title in order to satisfy us with an answer. It can also be off-putting to spend hours researching to find a reliable source of information. The most important thing to do when looking to arm ourselves with facts is to go to the source, most headlines are based on studies and reports released by scientists, environmentalists and people specialising in their fields, so finding these reports and basing our knowledge on these facts is much more important in order to gain a broader and well informed perspective.
It's common to want to bury our heads in the sand, believing everything will be ok is human nature and the alternative can be consuming and frightening to think about, but becoming part of the discussion or part of a community fighting towards a better future can offer the positivity needed to help impact change. Becoming an inspiration for others creates a domino effect - arguing or calling hypocrisy just wastes time, nearly all of us have drunk bottled water in our lives, driven a car, flown in an airplane - the point is what we chose to do from this point onwards, it might not be an easy life, but it is easier than the future predicted for us by the IPCC report.
The IPCC is the governing body responsible for assessing the worlds science relating to climate change and the IPCC Report gives an overview of the latest trends, analysis and predictions for the future of the planet.