Earth Week?
Tuesday, 28 April 2009, Written by Julien   
Last Wednesday was Earth Day. I went to the BBQ organized by Greening the Beige . After Earth Hour at the end of March, it was another occasion to talk about environment. It is really nice to talk but I have the feeling that those awareness rising initiatives do not have big impact in the short term.

earth_small.jpgSwitching from electricity to candles for an hour is quite debatable from a pure environmental point of view (candles are much less efficient than bulbs!) and it might also give a wrong message: "Switch off the lights for one hour and forget about environment until next year"! I found this great article from The Australian that sums it up well. What stated there is so true: "Unfortunately, this event - as with many public proposals on climate change - is an entirely symbolic gesture that creates the mistaken impression that there are easy, quick fixes to climate change."

Earth Day is a bit better as the message tends to be less simplistic, but still: it is quite easy to change your way of life for a single day. You can wait one day to wash your clothes, you can work one day from home to avoid using cab, you can make the extra effort to close the tap while brushing your teeth on that day... but would you be able to keep it up longer?

We have to change our way of life on the long term to really reduce our impact on the environment. So what about creating an Earth Week? It could be great fun and really have a positive impact.

We could have something like:
  • You choose one area where you think you could easily reduce your impact on environment for example transportation or electricity consumption or water consumption.
  • For two weeks before the Earth Week, you monitor your usage on this area (eg check the electricity or water meters or collect your taxi/gas bills) to know how much you really use.
  • You commit on a change you are willing to make (eg: cutting your cab/car usage by half, lower your water consumption by 20%).
  • During Earth Week you stick to this commitment.
  • At the end of the week, you can decide to stick to this commitment for the rest of the year!

I would love to do that. What about you?
Comments
Johan wrote :
This is a very interesting article and I appreciate your initiative. http://www.mindreign.com/en/mindshare/Environmental-Concerns/China-3a-The-Environmental-Rogue/sl36962308bp325cpp10pn1.html has some interesting views on the subject as well - they don't so much emphasize the impact of the individual, but the impact of industry....
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