Over 30 years of sound science, activism, and global awareness did not end last week, and it sure won’t anytime soon.
Of the most shocking events of last weak, the exit of the US federal government from the Paris Climate Accords, was seen as a resounding blow to environmentalists and those that care about limiting the effects of human caused climate change. While many see this as an end of an era, many should actually see this as a opportunity to continue to push for work toward a better environment at a local level. While the Paris Accords would have established standards by which the US as a whole were to be followed, it does not mean that individual cities and states cannot work towards reducing Co2 emissions. Indeed many states and cities such as New York and Los Angeles, across the US have vowed to work to cut emissions, and have chosen not to wait for the Federal government to take action. While the struggle to mitigate the effects of human caused climate change is one that requires a worldwide effort with the cooperation of all countries, we should not rest the entire struggle on one agreement or one country. Other countries around the world have signed onto increased Co2 reduction standards, and if the US federal government refuses to do so, it is up to states and cities to take the initiative. Many European countries have moved drastically towards the usage of renewable resources and the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. They made much of their efforts starting from the bottom up, and taking their environmental policy into their own hands. Examples include the Netherlands, France, and even the industrial powerhouse of Germany.
Environmental activists should remember that the struggle to save our planet did not end in Paris. It will continue even if the current administration in the White House refuses to acknowledge the devastating effects of human caused climate change. Over 30 years of sound science, activism, and global awareness did not end last week, and it sure won’t anytime soon.