Are You Being An Ostrich?

What do you do when you are facing a very big, very hard
problem?

Do you put your head in the sand and hope it will go away?

If you do, you’re not alone.

That’s because our brains are geared to deal with immediate threats to us and to people we know.

If we are facing an immediate threat to us, we can do something about it.  We can either fight it or flee it.

But what happens if the threat is something too big or unclear for us to work out quickly what to do?

What happens if it affects people we don’t know?

That’s when we tend to choose a third option.

Freeze.  Bury our heads in the sand.   Do nothing.

Or do something that takes our mind off the problem…or that gives the impression we are doing something about the problem.

Why?

Because it’s easier.  It’s something our little brains can deal with more easily.

And then we feel better.

Because we don’t have to confront the big, bad fear…and maybe do some hard things.

But does it actually solve the problem?

Of course not.

Sooner or later we need to deal with it.

We have to take action to reduce the problem…or we have to deal with the consequences.

And that’s what we do if we’re being mature adults.

But that’s not necessarily what our political leaders do. 😉

In the lead-up to the Australian election on 7 September 2013, there are some very big, very hard problems that the major political parties are not facing up to.

Problems like climate change…which is really a question of are we doing everything we can to ensure that the Earth will continue to be able to support life and civilisation as we know it?

You would think that would feature heavily in the election campaign.  With parties and candidates trying to out-bid each other on how much they are going to do to ensure that people can continue to live comfortably on this planet.

And that’s what most Australians want[1] : strong action on climate change.

And that’s what’s needed : strong action on climate change.

But the major parties have been silent on this critical issue during the election campaign.

You might have thought that news about climate change that breaks through the mainstream election coverage might prompt some response.  News like the discovery of a new positive feedback loop that will make global warming even worse[2]….followed by news that Australia has just had its hottest winter on record.[3]

But no.

Climate change is not featuring in the election campaign. Most of the political candidates are acting like ostriches with their heads in the sand.

Will that make it go away?

No.

And no matter what the outcome of the election, we will still have to deal with climate change.

We need to act now…because the consequences will be so bad if we don’t.

And the longer we delay action, the more likely we’ll have to face the consequences of our failure to act.

That’s why I do what I do in my business, online and in my community. Help people to take effective action to live more sustainably…and especially to make changes to the way we live, work and do business so that life on Earth as we know it can continue.

Because, after all, if the planet is uninhabitable, then everything else we do is for nought.

We need to face up to our responsibilities…and it’s easier if we’re smart.

Being smart about facing up to our environmental responsibilities is why I:

  • focus on clear pathways to sustainability…which is why I have been talking about pulling your money out of companies that promote use of fossil fuels (which is the main cause of the current climate change) and companies that have not factored climate change into their forward planning.
  • will be voting for the party that is focussed on substantial action on climate change.  (If you’re an Australian, Vote Climate, can help you compare the parties on key policies.)
  • am very excited to be working on some other things that will give you clearer pathways to sustainability. (More about that later! ;))

I’d love to read or listen your comments about you’re the political will for tackling climate change. Just leave a comment in the Reply box below…or send me a voice message by clicking on the tab on the right.

Till next time…be gentle to yourself and our world!

 


[1]  Vote Compass: Australians want more action on climate change. ABC News, 26 August 2013. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-08-26/vote-compass-climate-change-environment/4908224

[2] The astounding global warming impact on our oceans that will reduce cloud cover and bring tears to your eyes. Climate Code Red, 26 August 2013. http://www.climatecodered.org/2013/08/the-astounding-global-warming-impact-on.html#!

[3] Warm winter caps nation’s hottest year. Canberra Times, 2 September 2013. http://www.canberratimes.com.au/environment/weather/warm-winter-caps-nations-hottest-year-20130901-2syzt.html

Image credit: dedmazay / 123RF Stock Photo

 

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