I just wrapped up my course on climate change and communication from Cornell. In summary here’s what I learned: To be effective we need to stop the blame game and focus on local adaptation and mitigation. So, no name calling, no trying to convince people of the facts, no eye rolling, no despair. It’s real, it’s happening, here is what we have to do build hope and lead by example…Insert what you as an individual and a local community can do. You know your towns better than I do. NY State has a great model for local governments to follow. It details a ten step process for local governments to lead. Local governments have a tremendous amount of sway because they consume energy, manage solid waste, have authority over zoning, land use planning, and they involve local citizens. Lead from the bottom up.
Adaptations include changes to agriculture, beefing up infrastructure, addressing new disease vectors, etc. Mitigation include reducing fossil fuel consumption, enhancing carbon sinks. There is no technological solution for binding CO2, yet. We will have to adapt and mitigate to survive but we can do it.
Meanwhile I need to come up with my ‘project’. Shall it be teaching basic birding in Mexico with a side of climate change or blogging more regularly or both. Or any ideas you all may have?