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Redefining Environmentalism

I just finished reading an article responding to David Susuki’s claim that environmentalism has failed.  Raffi Cavoukian’s response tends along the lines of re-establishing children as the main voices of the environment (which may stem from his work as a children’s environmental activist. Does the song ‘Baby Beluga’ ring a bell for you? Thank Raffi!)

While I do think that we as adults have a huge role to play in the redefinition of the environmental movement, I do agree that children need to have bigger voices.  We need to not just reiterate ‘redue, reuse, recycle’ but also connect the dots as to where our food come from, where plastics come from, etc.

What I think is the best part of his article is that he discusses the need to re-invent how we talk about environmentalism. Instead of being divisive, angry, and fighting against each other for funding, we could take this time to redefine goals and niches.  We could present a more unified front, with everyone chipping in.

But most importantly, I think we need to take this time to ask ourselves why we are committed to making the world a better place.  Why do you recycle? Why do you bike to work? Why do you make the everyday choices that you make?  When we ask ourselves these questions, we can get a clearer picture of how to move forward.  I reduce, reuse and recycle because it creates less trash and creates less production/consumption.  So to move forward, I want to encourage others to not only recycle, but to find ways to not need to buy that product in the first place (eg reusable water bottles).

How would you define your environmentalism, and how would you redefine it to make it louder and clearer?

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