I wrote a post on social media on Mother’s Day which resonated with many, so I have decided to share it on the blog.
I’ve also expanded the list of things we can do to make a positive difference, which also includes a fabulous reference for how to #VoteClimate in your electorate if you’re heading to the polling booths this weekend.
Mother’s Day is a bittersweet day for me (like it is for so many). I am blessed to have a beautiful family of my own, yet lost my dear mumma 16 years ago to cancer. Being a single parent, she was my whole world.
We have missed 16 years of weddings and babies and becoming a parent and grandparent. We’ve missed countless phone calls and arguments and air guitar sessions and laughter. She worked her whole damn life to give my sister and I a better life, and we never got to repay the favour.
But you know what? The grief I have experienced processing all of this is not dissimilar to the overwhelming grief and anxiety I feel about the looming loss of the mother of all mothers – Mother Nature. We are her cancer.
In the wake of the UN-backed report released by the IPBES last week, which warns of the looming extinction of 1 million species, it’s time to shake ourselves into action.
Losing our natural world doesn’t just mean we can’t visit the ‘cute’ animals on our next holiday. If we lose the insects and bees that pollinate our food then we cannot feed ourselves, if our oceans are decimated then we wreak havoc on the very body of water that delivers 50% of our oxygen. There are many more examples where these came from – and many of them relate to our food system. Money will mean nothing if our civilizations have collapsed and we cannot feed ourselves.
This is heavy I know, it’s hard not to go down this rabbit-hole when you’re awake to what the scientists have been warning us about for far too long. Our children will be forced to face the impacts of what we’ve done to our beautiful earth.
So, this Mother’s Day and beyond, I ask you to start treating the world like you would your own mother. If we treat her like family, we may just have a chance.
Unsure what to do next? Here’s a start:
1. Research which political parties are strongest on climate policy and make your VOTE count. There is a fabulous website that provides how-to-vote guides for every electorate in Australia. BRILLIANT if you’ve left your homework to the last minute – www.environment.vote
3. Curb your meat consumption and if you do indulge, do it mindfully by sourcing organic or truly free range meat from trusted producers
4. Spend time in nature, regularly
5. Consider the impact of your travel choices. If you must take a flight then seek out a carbon offset program you trust
6. Switch to GreenPower (renewable) if you have the means. Check out providers here
7. Quit fast fashion. The fashion industry produces 20% of global wastewater and 10% of global carbon emissions – more than all international flights and maritime shipping. That $3 t-shirt has environmental and human rights costs that are far greater. If we focus on buying second-hand or to-last, our natural resources won’t be as heavily depleted
8. Use your shopping dollar to vote for the type of world you want to leave behind
9. We don’t need a few people doing things perfectly, we need millions of people having a crack. Hopefully this list provides you with a starting point
Importantly, I am by no means perfect. I try. I succeed. I fail. I’ve learnt not to beat myself up about it because at that point I lose motivation to try. And we must all try. Our future depends on it.
Thanks for making it this far.