April 20th, 2012 | Simcha Weinstein | Comments Off on It’s Earth Day Weekend!
With Earth Day just 2 days away, I wanted to remind everyone how critical it is that you not only celebrate this occasion in your stores and restaurants, but that your retail establishment stands strong as a powerful voice in your community for sustainable and viable lifestyle choices – whether it’s our food system, our energy supply, or how we move about our lives. Below are links to 2 articles I have written in the past that can help both with perspective and with actual data, helping you to understand just how important Earth Day (and actually making every day Earth Day) is to our world community. I encourage you to take a few minutes sometime this weekend to read (or re-read) them.
We are at a very critical time with our decision-making as we move forward. As I wrote several weeks back in a blog post:
So what will happen if the earth were to warm 2°C.? So far, the world has warmed about 0.7°C above pre-industrial levels. However, because of what has already been created, we are already locked in for another 0.7°C. In 2010, the National Research Council released a report detailing some of the risks that can occur at the 2°C mark. Such a rise could mean a 400% increase in wildfires in the western U.S., a 15% reduction in corn yields, and an increase in severe droughts. Scientific records suggest that the last time there was enough carbon dioxide in the air to go beyond the 2°C mark, much of the world’s ice melted, with sea levels rising as much as 4-6 meters higher than they are today. Many low-lying lands would get washed away in this scenario.
With such a grim prognosis for what could happen as the planet warms, you would think that we are intelligent enough to all get on the same page and take immediate action to slow this process entirely, right? Well, sadly no. Ecofys, a consulting group, tracks and calculates the various pledges made by the world’s nations and it doesn’t look good. If all of the cuts currently promised by all of the participating countries were to get enacted (and that’s a huge if especially considering that many of the pledges are voluntary), then we would see a 3.5°C warming by 2100. In other words, the best efforts from our current promises are going to yield devastating results! Most climate scientists believe that a 4° increase would create a future that would make human adaptation very difficult, completely destroying many ecosystems.
While this may seem particularly grim, it is upon us to educate our communities through celebration and joy, capturing the true spirit of Earth Day. Share your wisdom. I think it’s fair to say that letting this day pass as if it were simply “another day at the ranch” would be like not having bananas available to your shoppers. Both are a huge omission and disservice. And by the way, one more reminder, it’s still not too late to hang a beautiful Earth Day banner in your store – artwork and design courtesy of Albert’s Organics. Click Here to download the banner.
Happy Earth Day and have a wonderful weekend!