It was deeply moving to see the youth of the world rise up in protest, claiming their future during the Global Student Strike for Climate Change in September. Their actions and words have made it clear to me that my generation has let them down by being politically complacent and careless in our excessive lifestyles, leaving them the calamity called the Climate Crisis.
I am complicit in this tragedy by the very nature of how I conduct my life, which is by over consumption. As a caring grandfather, morally I cannot go on living this way. It comes down to the question of just how much or how little am I willing to love. This love is translated into my willingness to change the way that I live. If I am going to be sincere in my efforts to help future generations survive and thrive in a livable world, then I must examine every aspect of how I live my life and make decisions in the service of helping create a healthy planet.
This may sound daunting, but actually, once you begin the process, it becomes quite rewarding. In many cases, such as eating less meat or none at all, or traveling less, especially by air, you are helping create a better planet by reducing your carbon footprint. You are also doing yourself a favor and saving money along the way. The list goes on and on, but most important is electing people at all levels of government who will work to create laws that will protect our planet from further pollution and abuse.
The voices of the children inspire me to support them. I applaud their valiant efforts and want to dedicate myself to their cause. To this end, I have become a community organizer and activist and have formed 350 Oregon Central Coast.org to address these issues in their behalf. Currently, we are working on the creation of a climate action plan in cooperation with the Citizen’s Climate Lobby and the cities of Lincoln County. This effort, known as the Lincoln County Private/Public Climate Change Partnership, is led by the county commissioners and chaired by Kaety Jacobson. I welcome you to join us. You can do that by sending your email address to [email protected] and requesting to be on the mailing list of the partnership.
Bill Kucha is a resident of Depoe Bay.