Family Climate Emergency July 2023

Jul 02, 2023

Progress on housing emissions had been made by moving to green electricity supplier, and increasing loft insulation but pledging more (eg external wall insulation). Those living in apartments and occupying the space would naturally have lower heating footprints. More accessible locations have enabled more walking and cycling, although a new baby (Amy/Jesse) has resulted in a car purchase. A college reunion of US friends being held in Europe where none actually lived led to some discussion. Those who choose not to fly should not feel that they are creating space for others to fly more often.

New babies imply more emissions but the level would depend very much on the family behaviour. Every new baby in the UK, US or Canada could be a powerful influence on the behaviour of parents and grandparents in securing a longer term future for a livable planet.

Money matters and some believed in the efficacy of shareholder power and others in avoiding fossil fuel companies and investing in the greener alternatives.

Some members were already vegetarian or low on the meat eating scale and this is a trend that could continue.

China has been described in going in the wrong direction (burning coal to make stuff for the west) but is also investing in low carbon technologies at the highest rate and possibly making the greatest contribution to lower world population growth.

While corporates and government seemed incapable of dealing with the climate emergency (some more and less than others), lawyers and the courts might have to play a more active role. As will consumers/people for the sake of themselves, their families and their neighbours (in a legal sense).

Daniel was lucky being retired and able to work for ten hours a week for the climate emergency centre. Jesse's urban wildflower meadow was flourishing.

There seemed to be a high level of interest and awareness of climate impacts (including the Canadian wildfires) but there is a danger of spreading myths and genuine disagreements where there is lack of adequate knowledge. Is smoking tobacco an equal or comparable public harm to the extraction and burning of fossil fuels?

Voting and supporting the greener/est politicians can be futile and the least worst option with potential to wield power could be justified. This is currently relevant to US and UK.

Two and half years in (we started in January 2020), there seemed to be little more that we could do unless we recruited family members currently doing less? The amount of flying, driving and meat eating (and fossil investments) suggested we still had plenty of scope, but more participation would be good and encouraged as well as a variety of political actions.