Last month, former Irish president Mary Robinson spoke to an overflow crowd at Boston College. She addressed the climate crisis in a message that was both urgent and hopeful. Robinson asked people in every walk of life to take three steps to address the crisis. First, accept personal responsibility. Choose an action that you can and will carry out, such as conserving energy or changing your eating habits. Other more public actions might include divesting from fossil fuel companies and investing in clean energy sources. Second, pressure executives in industries such as fossil fuel, agriculture and transportation to change practices harmful to the environment. Third, imagine a world in which human efforts have significantly slowed global warming. Robinson’s third step might necessarily be our first because, until we see the goal as achievable, it’s unlikely we will be motivated to act. Let’s begin today by imagining a plant or animal especially dear to us, whose extinction we can—and must—help to prevent.
by Delores Dufner, OSB