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Love Is The Most Powerful Solution to the Climate Crisis

Love Is The Most Powerful Solution to the Climate Crisis

I'm stood in a bustling crowd at a To Kill A King (TKAK) reunion gig in London, watching as frontman Ralph takes in the raucous applause and cheering that follows every song. TKAK were playing the final night of their Cannibals with Cutlery album tour, their debut album that is now 11 years old. And yet the audience are loving every minute, myself included.

But what Ralph says next rings remarkably true to me. He says "It's so nice to have people clapping and cheering us again, because they don't do that in real life."

Love Can Help Solve the Climate Crisis

It All Starts with a Thank You

To Kill a King gig at the Garage, London

It's true isn't it, I mean, when was the last time you were applauded for something? Or when was the last time you told someone that they did a good job?

All too easily we quietly carry on with our daily lives without stopping to appreciate the amazing things we all do. 

All too easily we fail to appreciate how much good work goes into something we take for granted, like clothes for example. 

Each piece of clothing that you're wearing now is the end point of so much hard work. From growing or producing the material, to shipping, manufacturing, finishing and then selling the item to you, so many people have been involved in some point. 

But when we go to buy this finished garment, we are not directly reminded of all the work that has gone into the garment. Instead we are fed information about why we should buy it.

I'm not suggesting we do a round of applause before we buy an item in a shop or online. We saw how that panned out during lockdown for our key workers. It also means that being more thankful or appreciative of people's efforts is just the first step.

However I do think there's a lot more love that we can share with each other and for our planet on a daily basis.

Feel the Love

Don't forget to share the love with yourself, too. It is just as important to reflect on the good things that we do.

If you're feeling overwhelmed by the climate crisis, you're not alone. Maybe you suffer from eco-anxiety or some kind of climate hopelessness.

But it helps to focus on the things you can do, rather than bemoan the powers that be.

That's why we try to cherish all the wonderful feedback we get at GHC. It really does mean a lot when you share the love, whether that's on social media or when you pop into our shop and say really nice things about it. It helps us as a organisation to figure out what we should concentrate on, what works and what is the most valuable way to spend our time. 

Love is About Action

Ok, so a great first step is having that awareness, appreciation and gratitude for people and planet.

But how do we actually put this love we have for people and planet into action?

Here are a few ideas:

  1. Shop second hand. It's a perfect bit of TLC for your wallet as well as the planet. We need to love clothes for longer, not landfill them. In doing so, you're continuing to celebrate all the work by all the different hands that originally went into the garments.
  2. For the last ten years, the Climate Coalition has run a campaign called Show The Love. This involves creating a green heart and sending it to politicians or to other key decision makers in local communities in order to show our appreciation for people and planet and the urgent need to act to protect these. 
  3. Have conversations with loved ones about the climate crisis, allowing for different viewpoints. We can appreciate and celebrate our differences while working to find the common ground to look after the one Earth that we share.
  4. Think about what changes could be made at your workplace to make it more planet-friendly. Also think about celebrating whatever "eco wins" you achieve at work, perhaps even turn it into a reward scheme?
  5. Allow for rewilding in your garden or at work. Done correctly, it doesn't need to look messy and is a vital habitat for wildlife. We must also be appreciative of the instrumental work that all our flora and fauna does for us; bees and other pollinators need our help.
  6. Pledge to fly less. Find alternative ways of travelling abroad, think inter-railing or holidaying in the UK. It's a great excuse to give some love to local independent B&B's and local businesses.
  7. Eat less meat. The production of meat creates twice the amount of pollution compared to plant-based foods. Farming animals also requires a greater chunk of land which could be freed up to grow more crops or to help us transition to more renewable sources of energy, such as green gas. We can also save animals from the stress of the abattoir that curtails their lives.
  8. Try active travel. Can you swap the car for your bike or running shoes one day a week? It's a great way to commit to regular exercise (looking after yourself) and at the same time you're contributing less to polluting your community. And you reap the benefits of improved air quality, for example, when others also show their appreciation for each other's environments.

I Love Me, I Love You, I Love The Planet

These are the three phrases in our new shop window for February, which has been brilliantly put together by our volunteers. A big thank you to them!

I think it encapsulates this link I have been trying to make between fully appreciating people and their positive actions or work and creating the grounds on which to tackle the climate crisis and look after people and planet. 

You have to start with yourself. Does that sound woo-woo? It doesn't need to be. It's about recognising your own worth and your power to be able to change things, however small this may seem. 

Sharing the love with others is the next step. We all have different roles to play in the climate crisis so we need to appreciate each person for what they contribute.

It will take a team effort to restrict the global temperature rising to 1.5c. We have already spent an entire year in breach of this target. Each of us around the globe is counting on each other to take action against climate change. Perhaps if we were more empathetic and aware of the millions of people that have already been displaced because of climate change we would soon realise that working together is our only option.

By supporting and encouraging each other, sharing the love, we hold each other to account with the positive reinforcement to keep us going. 

And why do we do all of the above? Because we love our planet, and there is no planet B. 

So what do you make of all this? Do we need to spend more time taking stock of the amazing things we do as humans, but also being grateful and celebrating our  natural world also?

*cue applause*

 

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