Provocative, right? At this point some readers are probably cheering me on. Some readers are probably ready to jump immediately to the comments and publicly berate me. But hang on for a second, and let me explain.
Like so many of the most important topics in the world, climate change is confusing. I've completely given up on my local media presenting any useful information. I've yelled at the TV when they've reduced their coverage of this topic to proving global warming with a sound bite (byte?) based on a statistic that even I can shoot holes in. As in, "the fact that average temperatures in San Diego have risen over the last six years proves global warming."
Seriously? The earth is how old (and no, I'm definitely not getting into that debate today) and temperature records have been kept for how many of those years (100, give or take) and you want me to buy global warming based on a 6-year trend? I don't think so. I was pretty much not excited when I found out that climate change was the selected topic for Blog Action Day.
On the flip side, I've talked to friends who have taken time to dig more deeply into this topic. They've read the books and seen the movies. One of them is scientist with a PhD. These friends tell me there is reason for concern. They tell me that the arguments and the science have merit and are worth taking seriously. They've convinced me that climate change isn't something to immediately dismiss just because the local news can't manage to report on it meaningfully.
So why doesn't it matter?
At some point, completely confused by all of the mixed messages, I threw up my hands in despair, ready to walk away from the whole thing and not make a statement. But then, I heard the still quiet voice: this is my Father's world. I realized that whether or not I believe in climate change, I have a responsibility to be a steward of my blessings. If recycling is good for the earth, I should do it because it's the right thing to do for the gift of God that is this planet. In that context, it doesn't matter if the climate is changing or not, it's empirically a good thing to do. It's what you might call a win-win situation because the right things to do in caring for the earth are many of the same things that the climate change voice advocates as being the right things to do.
I am far from doing everything I can do in this area. I frequently come up against the fact that doing the right thing is an inconvenience, and sometimes the easy thing wins. But I try. I take a reusable coffee cup and water bottle just about everywhere. I don't drink bottled water. I pack my lunch in reusable food containers instead of plastic bags. I almost never use paper plates, and on occasion I've volunteered to do the dishes so others won't use them. I recycle when I can, and reuse containers when they can't be recycled in my community. I believe very much that every little bit helps, and because of that, I keep trying to do more.
Thinking of it in this way has helped me understand how to approach this important but confusing topic, and I post this today because my hope is that what I've learned might in some way help your thinking about it. Thanks for reading.
Originally posted at: http://rebeccasmiscellanies.blogspot.com/