How do we care enough?
18 June 2019
By Hayley Carmichael
Catherine Edminson has been an activist for the natural world for over 25 years and has recently taken on the role of a Care Without Carbon Envoy for SCFT; she tells us why ‘care’ is integral to tackling the climate emergency we now face…
Are we finally getting it that Nature IS our World?
“How do the words climate change and climate emergency make us feel? Nervous, worried, anxious? We may also be feeling fear, anger and grief. I know many people who are and despite my long acquaintance with the term climate change, I still find myself going through that cycle of emotions. Then there is the issue of denial because anaesthetising ourselves from the larger forces at play – apparently beyond our control – is another very human response. These feelings are a normal reaction to our environmental and social problems which seem so overwhelming and difficult. The ecological crisis is leading us to ask the question – how do we want to live our lives and how do we connect with others? Our emotional and gut reactions are telling us that something is wrong.”
We are working in healthcare because we care
“How do we care enough about climate change to make more of a difference when our piece of the jigsaw seems so very small? When the really big causes of the environmental crisis seem beyond our reach to influence and when our jobs, family and friends absorb so much of our physical and mental energy? We can accept the fact of climate change but it seems we have to park it somewhere in order to get on with our lives.”
“Human beings need motivation, confidence and trust in order to live successfully but we find ourselves feeling constantly challenged and threatened on many levels. The challenges of the environmental and social crisis seem too big and often we don’t know where to start. We see with our own eyes what is happening to climate, nature and to communities around the world and it disturbs us, we are right to be disturbed, this is our wake up call.”
We now know what consuming three planets of resources on a finite planet looks and feels like.
“The good news is that the age of climate change denial is finally over and we can all play a growing part in the movement of positive change to protect our future, a future which is intricately entwined with the planet’s multiple and delicate ecosystems. The worry, sadness and fear we are carrying isn’t going to go away, therefore we need to come to terms with our feelings by examining our personal relationship to the planet, connecting with each other, connecting with friendships, colleagues and community and through a more balanced understanding of what is really going on – the good and the bad.”
We can create the change we need
“One thing we can release now is the fear and cynicism bred in us by the media that other countries aren’t doing enough – any google search will prove the opposite. Another thing we could release is the expectation that it is up to our world leaders and the experts and ‘others’ to sort it all out. Helping ourselves to be more empowered can help make us feel a lot better, because every one of us really does have a part to play to embed the changes required to live in harmony with this beautiful, blue, watery planet. “
“We can’t do it all but I do believe that every one of our positive choices and actions are connective and co-operative, creating unstoppable tipping points for the changes we want, literally right across the planet. I think we should be proud of that.”
You can make a pledge to do something to reduce your impact on the environment at www.carewithoutcarbon.org/dares