Let’s combat climate change together
By Lynn Owens
Sustainable Scripps Ranch
“The greatest threat to global public health is the continued failure … to keep the global temperature rise below 1.5 degrees C and to restore nature … The science is unequivocal: a global increase of 1.5 degrees C above the pre-industrial average and the continued loss of biodiversity risk catastrophic harm to health that will be impossible to reverse.”
—A joint editorial statement from 220 of the world’s leading medical and public health journals in Sept. 2021.
Here’s our Sustainable Scripps Ranch mission statement from 2009: “To create more sustainable lifestyles and community through education, advocacy, and application of sustainable practices such as energy, water and environmental conservation.”
Hmmmm, how are we doing?
Education and Application: We’ve learned and done a lot. We ran low-water landscape tours, green energy workshops, zero-waste trainings, sustainability hacks and more. Scripps Ranch advanced many important household sustainability trends in our yards, houses, solar rooftops, water, vehicles, food, waste streams and recycling, and so much more.
But, we’ve skimped on Advocacy. The world’s climate is degrading faster than Scripps Ranch is improving, and all our best local improvements are not and will never be enough to turn the tide.
Writer, historian and activist Rebecca Solnit: “Personal virtue is an eternally seductive goal … individual acts of thrift and abstinence won’t get us the huge distance we need to go in this decade.”
Furthermore, she notes it was the oil companies and their PR firms that did much to advance the idea of our personal “footprints.”
Pressure is needed at every level: city, county, state, federal and beyond. For example, even within forward-thinking California, energy companies including SDGE are pushing back on rooftop solar, community energy and other policy decisions intended to advance climate goals statewide and beyond.
How to multiply our advocacy power? Unite our advocacy with others. Here are a few resources to check out:
• North County Climate Change Alliance: NCCCAlliance.org
• Citizens Climate Lobby: CitizensClimateLobby.org – San Diego chapters in both Central and North County; North County Inland coming soon
• San Diego County Climate Action Network: SDclimatenetwork.org – excellent monthly calendar of local events
• www.SanDiego350.org – one of the oldest and most focused climate change groups
Please email us with your own ideas and stories of activist groups you think are making a difference, and tell us what you’re doing to help: SustainableSR@scrippsranch.org. Visit our website for more resources and ideas: scrippsranch.org/ssr.