I have never been a professional environmental, paid a salary to do something to save the planet. I’ve made a little money writing about it and that’s about it. I am still very much a pleb, an amateur. And I have always intended to stay that way, because that’s the only way to understand the perspective of all the regular people whose efforts are needed to change things, really. It won’t be the professionals (though they can help) and it won’t be the politicians (till they’re pushed). It will be ordinary people, mobilized to save their communities and ways of life, and perhaps their species, too.
So here’s the big question. Why don’t we change our ways? Why do we keep going straight ahead when there are warning signs everywhere, and when the wall we’re going to run into is getting easier and easier to see?
Professional environmentalists focus on what we should do, and they’re great at it. I’m astonished at how many solutions there, already being tried and proven. But what I focus on is motivation: why don’t we do what we should? Until that question gets enough attention, all the wonderful solutions in the world won’t save the planet.
I think, in general, we are lazy. And we tend to wait till other people do things, so we don’t look like goof balls, before we do things. But I have seen my mom, who poo-poo’d the whole recycling thing, but over time, she has learned to do it without fussing. And we do what is easy. If it is easy to use different lightbulbs, then we will do it. And I think, once things become more available, people will change. Now, though it is improving, consumers have to search to find eco-friendly products. I think as things become easier to find, people will make different choices.