12-4-19: Five Reasons to be Hopeful
December 4, 2019
I went to a large middle management meeting, and climate change was front and center. As a large health care organization in Southern California, we are getting ready. There have been 17 active wildfires in California in October 2019, 94,000 acres burned, and 129 million dead tress. We discussed extreme heat events, and that the last 8 out of 10 hottest years have been this last decade. Heat related illness cause more deaths annually than all other extreme weather events. We looked at color coded maps that estimate the increasing reach of Dengue fever. And that climate change drives increased domestic violence, child abuse/neglect, mental illness exacerbations and suicide attemtps and completions.
But this meeting gave us reason to be hopeful, as I was proud that our large organization has made many moves to address climate change. But since this is a non-work related and semi-anonymous blog – I won’t go into that. But what around us gives us reason to hope? We cannot be paralyzed with fear, but must wake up and do something- anything. These are 5 reasons I am hopeful this Wednesdays.
- Giving Tuesday: I wrote a blog post about Cyber Monday and that our family was not going to shop, and implored our small readership to buy nothing or at least less plastic https://drplasticpicker.com/cyber-monday-drplasticpicker-hopes-you-buy-less-and-less-plastic-things/. Yet it looks like the news outlets are reporting Cyber Monday broke records. But a reason to be hopeful is that today was Giving Tuesday, and I am hoping the world opened up their wallets to give to the earth.
- Rainforest Trust: One of the reasons I continue to be hopeful is already established and vetted organizations like the Rainforest Trust can help us combat climate change. They have 100% rating on Charity Navigator. So this month in addition to the $55 we donated after saving money cooking Turkey Soup and watching a movie at home https://drplasticpicker.com/turkey-soup-how-can-homemade-soup-save-money-time-family-and-the-earth/, we decided to donate another $50 today since it is Giving Tuesday. Our donations were quadrupled, and became $420 effectively saving at $0.58 an acre, 724 acres of Kenyan grasslands. So that money I would have spent on Weight Watchers and a night at the movies, we instead preserved 724 acres of threatened savannas in Kenya. African Elephants, Grevy’s Zebras, Black Rhinos, Lions, Beisa Oryx, African wild dogs, and not to mention the carbon we save.
- Long Beach Persimmon Tree Saved: If you remember, we had a Save This Persimmon Tree Campaign on this blog and instagram. One of our RN’s wanted to convince his sister not to chop down their backyard persimmon tree which produces beautiful fruit https://drplasticpicker.com/save-this-persimmon-tree/. Well the tree is still with us and they brought back these fiber-rich fruits. Trees gives us so much especially ones that are already established and bear fruit, so we don’t have to import food from far off lands.
- Atlantic Southwest Humpback Whales Recovering: These whales had been at 27,000 and then hunted almost to exinction to a few hundred in the early 1900s, and then protected in the 1980s. They recovered through the population bottle neck of 450. There are now 25,000 whales – 90% recovered.
- Dr. Plastic Picker Featured in the PB Monthly: And our blog made it into the local paper! It was such a wonderful experience to be interviewed and get to talk to the local journalist. This makes me hopeful as I think it means that everyone is waking up, and realizing we need to save our beaches and our earth. It was gratifying to read my story, but the story is really about all of us – how we have the power as individuals to enact change. I hope that others will read this story and think twice before buying single-use plastics, think twice about setting a seemingly innocuous coffee cup on the sidewalk, and maybe just automatically pick up 3 pieces of plastic themselves if they are on the beach.
So this is drplasticpicker signing off. Yes I invite everyone to “Meet Dr. Plastic Picker,” meet me at the beach. You might not see me, but then just take a selfie of yourself on your phone and you will realize that you are Dr. Plastic Picker!
The next in this series https://drplasticpicker.com/12-11-19-five-reasons-to-be-hopeful/