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Posts Tagged ‘personal action’

I know I said I am going to buy a bike, and a helmet. I am going to register with Green Dimes. I am going to buy a clothesline, and a composter. I am going to buy natural home cleaning products. I said I am going to do all these things, and I haven’t yet. It’s called procrastination. Waiting until the last minute to do what needs to get done. Last minute? The 11th Hour has become a popular idiom for global warming doom. If I am a procrastinator, and I wait until the last moment to do what I find most unpleasant, the question becomes then, what is the deadline? How does one define the 11th hour? And more importantly, what needs to happen, in order for me to feel that the moment has come? Or will it be already too late to act, when I feel it, finally? No, the real challenge is how to turn the things on the list into a priority? How to get them to the top of my bigger personal to-do list, ahead of shopping, work even, and personal indulgence items?

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Now is payback time

Great article from Vaclav Havel in the New York Times yesterday. He was able to put in words what I have been feeling for a long time. ‘Maybe we should start considering our sojourn on earth as a loan. There can be no doubt that for the past hundred years at least, Europe and the United States have been running up a debt, and now other parts of the world are following their example. Nature is issuing warnings that we must not only stop the debt from growing but start to pay it back. There is little point in asking whether we have borrowed too much or what would happen if we postponed the repayments. Anyone with a mortgage or a bank loan can easily imagine the answer.’

The bargaining problem

I can so well relate to the internal bargaining part, this vain attempt on the part of my ego to negotiate with nature. In my case, I am not questioning the need to repay with some kind of personal sacrifice. I am just wondering if, maybe, I can get away with not paying all of my personal debt back. OK, I will cut down on all the things that don’t deprive me that much, but the ones I really like, such as shopping for clothes, could I please keep on my to do list? I am also tempted to abdicate some of my personal responsibility and to turn it over to policy makers.

We are all responsible

I will leave the last word to Vaclav Havel. ‘I’m skeptical that a problem as complex as climate change can be solved by any single branch of science. Technological measures and regulations are important, but equally important is support for education, ecological training and ethics – a consciousness of the commonality of all living beings and an emphasis on shared responsibility.’

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