Climate Change is not my problem. Or is it ?
When I began to think about the statement ‘Climate change is not my problem’, I quickly decided that I could not disagree more with the statement.
I know what you’re thinking “Ahh the idealism of youth”, however when you break it down the problem of climate change is, at its very core, a problem caused by individuals. When dealing with global issues such as climate change it would be remiss of us not to acknowledge the power of an individual in both the cause and solution to the problem. Now, I’m aware many of you may feel this is far too great a burden to carry on our shoulders, however, it only becomes a burden if you allow it to. We can only begin to tackle such an issue if we truly believe that we, as individuals, can we make a change.
As I’m sure many of you are aware , the extremely disposable and consumerist society in which we live is largely to blame for the deterioration of our planet. Instinctively many of you may say that the guilty party here is solely large capitalist companies, and there is some truth in that I’ll admit. However, may I now pose this question ‘would these companies be producing such low quality products at breakneck speed if there were no demand for such products ?’. Take the toxic fast fashion industry for example, which is currently the second largest pollutant in the world beaten only by energy and the use of fossil fuels. Since the advent of social media in recent years, the disposability of clothes has become far more prevalent, with over 70% of the 53 million tonnes of fibres produced by the fashion industry each year ending up in landfill. This is largely due to the see it, want it, buy it mentality imposed upon us my influencer culture. If we all, as individuals, made a conscious effort to simply being able to distinguish between what is a need and what is merely an impulse buy, we could make a massive impact.
Overall, I feel climate change is my problem as without feeling some element of culpability I would have no desire to rectify it. I don’t mean to stand here and pontificate my beliefs however, I do strongly believe that by making little changes such as those I have just mentioned we, as individuals possess an incredible capacity for change. I will now leave you with this quote by esteemed author and environmentalist Rachel Carson,
“One way to open your eyes is to ask yourself,
What if I had never seen this before ?
What if I knew I would never see it again ?”