Have you seen this article yet? It was on my news feed yesterday, explaining how a new report on climate change shows that Canada is warming at twice the global rate, and that northern Canada is warming at three times the global rate. That means some of the first and worst impacts of climate change - especially rising sea levels and raging forest fires - could be experienced here.
Speaking of which, on Monday the BC Wildfire Service was called in to fight one of the first wildfires of the season - a 3.5 hectare blaze already burning in the Squamish Valley. Fortunately, the province has just increased the annual budget for fighting wildfires up from 61 to 101 million dollars per year, in response to the record-breaking fire seasons over the past two years, and in recognition of the fact these catastrophic events are becoming the new normal.
When I read that article yesterday, I realized that I will probably not live to see the day when the impacts of climate change begin to reverse. Before things are going to get better, they're going to get way worse, and the new report on Canada's alarming warming rate means there's no way we're avoiding this fate.
What we can do is begin to dig ourselves out of this hole now. The IPCC says that if we can turn the tide and bring our emissions down over the next decade, we'll have a fighting chance of getting through this challenge and offering a beacon of hope to future generations. We have a responsibility to future generations to do everything we can to make that happen.
I started Force of Nature because I truly believe that community organizing is one of the most powerful and undervalued tools for breaking the boundaries of what we as human beings consider possible. It has incredible power to help us transcend our self-imposed realities and breakthrough to new realms of potential an possibility, which is what is absolutely essential right now if we are to have any hope of escaping our current predicament.
The organizers at Force of Nature are winning powerful campaigns to fast-track climate action here in the Lower Mainland so that we can hit our IPCC targets and accelerate climate action around the region - and show other people that it's possible to break through. From calling for municipal targets to mentoring high school climate stikers to fighting for better transit that's accessible for all, we're out there every day, pushing for change from the ground up.
Because even if we won't live to see the impacts in our own lifetimes, knowing we were part of turning this around will give us pride, courage and resilience and most of all, hope, in the face of the challenging decades ahead.
The emergency is here and the moment is now.
Will you help the Lower Mainland breakthough?