Do you wonder what the world will be like in 30 years? Do you think about how you can prepare your children for that future? I do.
I’ve slowly come to accept that climate change isn’t going to go away. Even if we do choose to change our ways, it will be too little too late. There's no disputing the facts and sadly, I think we’re stupid enough to continue exploiting our planets resources until there’s nothing left. I’ve even started to wonder whether i’m wasting my time working in threatened species conservation, because in the not too-distant future we’ll be struggling to save the common species, let-alone the threatened ones.
I want to ensure that our family, and in particular Little Eco, is equipped to adapt to whatever environmental and societal changes we face.
In the short-term, that means having savings set aside for unexpected hurdles and being prepared for short-term environmental disasters (after all, Newcastle has already suffered one devastating earthquake and many homes were out of power for over a week after the 2007 flood). So we’ve started an emergency kit; are settling into a food stockpiling routine; and have become passionate about building community, to name just a few of our short-term resilience builders.
More recently we’ve started to do some longer-term planning. This has led me to learn more about climate change adaptation. Climate change adaptation is all about adapting to, and living with, climate change and its impacts. It involves accepting that climate change prevention through mitigation is probably not going to cut it and that we need to make changes to improve our resilience and ability to adapt to changes as they happen. I was skim reading this discussion paper on promoting social inclusion in adaptation to climate change and the following words got me thinking…
"The capacity to adapt to climate change will vary between people. Those with good resources: mental and physical health, a steady medium to high income and savings, strong networks and social capital, secure employment and housing and high levels of education, will find it easier to make necessary adjustments. Those who have vulnerabilities in one or more of these areas will find it more difficult to make adjustments, while those with few resources may find they move to a position of greater disadvantage, insecurity and exclusion from society."
I started thinking about what I hoped Little Eco would achieve so that she would be one of those with the resources to readily adapt. I never thought I’d be one of those parents that expect their children to be anything in particular or achieve certain things. I just want her to be happy. But now I find myself staring 30 years into the future at a 33 year old Little Eco…and hoping that she has higher education, secure employment, a steady income, and savings. That doesn’t feel right? I just want her to be happy. She doesn’t need those things to be happy. Or does she?
I’d love to know whether any of you are also adapters and are planning for a future with climate change and higher fuel, food and energy prices? Or do you prefer to deal with challenges if and when the arise?