The problems and suffering in the world today, and more drastic challenges that might be facing us in future (especially climate change) demand that we take action. This page covers two ways of doing it:
- Activism, as a way to actively try to make a change on your community by influencing governments and other members of it.
- Green living, as a change in lifestyle in order to acquire practices that try to avoid having a negative impact on the planet.
Green living is good and we recommend it. However, your actions as a single individual will have a much greater impact if they influence your community and society, and let society see an alternative that they find both achievable and attractive.
Activism[edit | edit source]
Civil disobedience works, at least in some societies at some times. Community blockades, and other actions by groups such as Greenpeace and Sea Shepherd continue in this tradition of action.
The aim is to get attention for a cause, and sympathy from influential people. (The most important influential people are usually voters, but getting attention from media is one way of doing this.) Long concerted action is generally needed - governments generally do not change course because of one protest or one case of civil disobedience.
BeyondTalk.net (Climate Pledge of Resistance) points out that during the Great Depression, it was only massive pressure from citizens, often including civil disobedience, that allowed President Roosevelt to make changes that most Americans now take for granted.
I agree with you, I want to do it, now make me do it.
Green living[edit | edit source]
Green living (or sustainable living) is a lifestyleW that attempts to reduce an individual's or society's use of the Earth's natural resourcesW and his or her own resources. In practice, it deals about practical lifestyle choices, large and small, to live inline with the Earth's carrying capacities, while maintaining (or sometimes improving) our quality of life. Besides lifestyle choices, the housing and appliances we use also has its impact on the environment. These however are explained in detail at Autonomous houses and neighbourhoods. This article only focuses on choices in lifestyle/habits. Sustainable city living then again discusses some of the areas of action specific to green living in a urban environment.
In order to make sustainable choices, it is very helpful to have solid, reliable information that tells us which behaviors are sustainable and which are unsustainable, and -more importantly-, which actions will make the greatest positive difference for us, and should be prioritized. Green living can be high tech (buying a hybrid vehicle), low tech (green cleaning, or completely "back to nature." It can be smart grid or off the grid. Sustainable city living explains some of the areas of action for a city dweller.
Notes[edit | edit source]
- It seems less likely to work in a brutal non-democratic regime.
- Ainoa, J., Kaskela, A., Lahti, L., Saarikoski, N., Sivunen, A., Storgårds, J., & Zhang, H. (2009). Future of Living. In Neuvo, Y., & Ylönen, S. (eds.), Bit Bang - Rays to the Future. Helsinki University of Technology (TKK), MIDE, Helsinki University Print, Helsinki, Finland, 174-204. ISBN 978-952-248-078-1.
- Ross, Greg. "An interview with Lester Brown" American Scientist.