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Walk softly on this earth.
It is the only Earth
we will ever have

Climate Change

473 words


In honor of the Climate March in New York City, September 21, 2014


If you believe the science, we are on a dire path. Our beautiful blue orb is heating up and there doesn’t appear to be a united effort to stop what what has been set in motion.

It is like any disaster. Resiliency and adaptation are key to survival. My principal once said when computers hit our school, “When the paradigm shifts, everyone goes back to zero.” Will you swim or just tighten your seatbelt and go down with the ship?

True, the meager efforts I suggest will do little to change anything. But, what else can we do? Our skill sets must change or we won’t survive.

Here is my list of important things to do:

Walk: Whenever possible, walk. The number of cars on our planet is mind boggling. Parking my car won’t do much, but all of us being mindful of what we can accomplish on foot or bicycling or on public transportation, before we no longer have the choice to guzzle gas, is a good thing.

Conserve water: I teach hand washing to students. Use soap, a trickle of water, and lots of friction to make a mass of bubbles. Wash fronts and backs, don’t forget your thumbs. Still using a trickle, the soap bubbles rinse off easily. It takes about a quarter cup of water to do a great job of hand washing. This is just one idea.

Recycle: I began recycling when it was difficult. Today there is recycling once a week, on the curb, no sorting, and you don’t have to take off labels or crush cans.

Generate less trash and recycling: Shop carefully. Our food alone comes with so much plastic packaging, and it goes right back out as trash. I use cloth bags and nylon mesh produce bags for everything. I put my trash can out about every three to four months, saving garbage truck stops. Compost goes in the worm bin and all other food waste goes in my freezer and into the yard debris bin on pick up day.

Walk lightly on Earth: Our tracks will be evident for centuries to come. Fracking is forever.

Spend wisely: Every dollar spent is a dollar spent for the kind of world your grandchildren will live in. Think about every dollar before you spend it.

Eat well: I know a man who only eats what comes in boxes. He looks like it. I think of organic food as redundant. Local might be more important than organic. Read “Spend wisely” above.

Expand your community: Smile and speak to everyone you meet. It can’t hurt and it might make a huge difference in our survival.

Become an activist: Decide what kind of world you want and work to make it happen. Your grandchildren will ask you what you did to make a difference. What will be your answer?


Dianne Roth is a teacher, mother, grandmother, and freelance writer. She lives in Oregon.




Last updated on November 3, 2015