There are many things that need to be addressed and done to prevent a global ecological disaster or a stoppage to nature’s life support systems that could spell doom for all species including human beings on Earth.
But I’d like to digress here and follow a different train of thought and elaborate instead on a different angle. It seems that day in and day out every environmentalist or doomsday prophet keeps on harping about things only getting worse. True, in many cases they are but what about the campaigns, initiatives and efforts that have made a difference to change things. Again, I understand that their numbers may be less or marginal when compared to the number of planetary problems. But made a difference, they have. For instance, the United Nations under its United Nations Environment Program launched the Billion Tree Campaign a few years ago with the aim to promote biodiversity across the globe and to counter deforestation. The target figure for 2009 was the planting and care of 7 billion tree saplings. This target was surpassed and where the total record stood at 7.4 billion. The key importance of this campaign was involving communities from across the globe to help make a difference towards safeguarding its flora populations and preventing their further dwindle. They engaged with ordinary citizens in a 170 countries, who through their own capacity, contributed to turn this goal into a reality.
The crux of my argument, therefore, is that I find that most environmental outcries never speak of the success stories or the campaigns or people that have made a difference in spite of the odds. The importance of showing an audience that a difference can be made through careful planning, working together and the ensuing benefits for all concerned will go long way in helping to boost campaigns across the entire environmental spectrum. However, cynics and the know-it-all class would more than gladly like to point out here that one can’t talk about campaigns that have no relevance to the problem(s) being spoken about at the moment. But what I’m really getting at is two points. The first is showcasing best practices that may be followed to ensure a successful campaign and the second is giving an audience hope or a positive feeling that they can make a difference. By all means highlight the dire environmental situations that are present and the negative impact they are having but don’t miss out on what we can do to change things.
Often, I find that the reason why most people continue to be “Sofa Activists” (*By this I mean, people just sit in their homes and say to themselves or others that something needs to be done but who end up never do anything concrete) is that they often feel that their attempts would be in vain. The situation or people causing those environmental problems are far too powerful to overcome and win over.
What we really need is an Environmental Group or Environmental CEO / Celebrity to articulate a strong vision, message and road map and also provide their audience with a feeling of hope that they can actually make a difference either through physical efforts, financial donations, ideation and engagement with the youth. This way, no matter how small their contribution may be, it will go a long way towards moving our planet away from the brink of disaster and slowly but surely towards helping Humanity win The Green Game! Next Take please!