Twelve years ago my daughter was seven and my son was eight. Twelve years ago I had recently moved from New York City to New Jersey and ClimateMama was still a dream. I feel like I have hardly aged, and then I look at my children and I see clearly the passage of time. Twelve years ago my father was alive and the cancer that killed him was invisible. Twelve years seems like a lifetime ago, and yet it seems like it was only yesterday. Time marches on, and it is not on our side.
Greys Anatomy began its television run 13 years ago and the first Harry Potter novel was released in 1997, twenty-one years ago! Time flies.
In early October 2018 the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change told us that we will surpass a 1.5 C degree rise in temperature from pre-industrial times within twelve years, putting our planet at risk of runaway climate chaos and ourselves and our species at mortal risk. Twelve years flies by.
I hope that in twelve years my children have careers they love, significant others in their lives who love them as much as I do, and that we all have our health and happiness. But, in twelve years, if we do nothing to control our manmade greenhouse gas emissions, we may be living climate chaos. Extreme weather events will be regular and reoccurring factors and the problems that these events bring will put our lives on a permanent path of chaos.
The compound problem of climate chaos is edging forward, faster then we thought possible but with clear and direct determination, fueled by us and our distractions. As George R.R. Martin, the author of the Game of Thrones books has confirmed, the threat that “winter is coming” is a parallel to our modern day climate crisis; we are living it and it is here and near.
So what do we do?
- As Climate Mamas and Papas we must keep talking about the climate crisis and demanding actions, even as the craziness of the day tries to shut us down. We must remind our friends, our families, our children and our neighbors that we are running out of time and what we do, the companies and organizations we support, and how we vote matters.
- Check each of the websites of the people who want your vote this November, or call their offices and see if they have an answer to your question: “What will you do about our climate crisis?” If they don’t have an answer or they haven’t thought about climate change, they probably don’t deserve your vote. If your candidate is already in office, what is their environmental voting record? Let the League of Conservation Voters scorecard help you to find out.
- Do you have a pension fund, or investments in mutual funds or stocks? You can and you should talk to your broker, or your pension fund manager about divesting those funds from fossil fuel companies and they’re supporting infrastructure. Sign our petition to call for New Jersey to take a lead nationally and divest it’s pension funds from fossil fuel companies. New York City and New York state are already considering doing this too.
- Call on your state government to call for a MORITORIUM on all new fossil fuel infrastructure. This includes pipelines, gas, coal or oil power plants and compressor stations and of course any new drilling or mining of fossil fuels.
We need to “get real” we are out of time and our children are counting on us. Their future and now is in our hands.
Vote for their future and ours. Make it YOUR priority – we have!
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