For those of you convinced that we should reduce emissions (perhaps a minority among my readers), is it worth taking individual action to lower your own CO2 footprint?
Paul Kelly has been making the case for years that we should, and he has been acting in accordance with his principles, working in Chicago to help people lower emissions one family at a time. Paul says that for a variety of reasons it is becoming important that we change the fuels that run our economy. He adds that for the first time in recorded history it is now possible to do this.
I agree with Paul, but for slightly different reasons. If I quit emitting CO2 completely (well, I’d still like to breathe…) it would not dent the planetary totals for emissions. So why bother?
Especially for those who are not overly concerned about climate change, that’s a big ask. But even many of the true skeptics understand that fossil fuels won’t last forever, that conventional pollution is destroying lives today and that we will need to change our infrastructure to handle those two facts–and it doesn’t hurt to start early.
I believe people who can afford to should put solar panels on their roofs, drive hybrid or completely electric cars, walk whenever they can, use public transportation and generally make a conscious effort not to needlessly contribute to climate change.
The reason is not so much about individual emissions. It’s about sending a message. Not just to politicians–they’re pretty deaf on their best days. If enough consumers send purchasing messages to manufacturers, distributors, utilities, etc., they will make changes to their manufacturing, distributing and power generation.
And that will make a difference.