1. Adam Thyer
  2. Environment
  3. Sunday, 22 March 2020
Hi all

There have been quite a few media stories and tweets connecting COVID-19 and climate change. The connections have been various, but one of the most common has been, "If we can react so quickly and strongly to COVID-19, why are we largely ignoring more dangerous threats such as the climate emergency?" I made this kind of connection myself in the introduction of my recent blog post, It's time to declare a global emergency!

Here are a few of the stories I have read:

Why Is COVID-19 Taken More Seriously Than Climate Change? - Cleantechnica.

Coronavirus response proves the world can act on climate change - The Conversation.

Covid-19: a dress rehearsal for the climate emergency? - Eco-Business.

It's probably too early to say with any certainty. But I wonder whether the current pandemic might make some people more inclined to heed expert warnings about the the collapse of the various ecosystems that make-up our biosphere? What do you think?
Adam Thyer, Founder at GreenExecutive
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Interesting question Adam Thyer

A great many people are going to die because of leaders who ignored expert advice. So I think COVID-19 will expose the dangers of having leaders who are not scientifically literate.

How much this will influence the voting behaviour of people who support this kind of politician might be a different story. When you don't believe in science, you can find ways to explain away almost any inconvenient truth.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. Environment
  3. # 1
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
I think that governments around the world are going to be forced to take drastic measures to combat the coronavirus. This will prove what is possible when the world is confronted by a common threat. Hopefully, this will have a positive affect on community perceptions of what can be achieved. However, once the COVID-19 hysteria subsides, the status quo will be pushing very hard for a rapid return to business as usual. So I think it is very important that sustainability influencers of all kinds be well-prepared to argue for a transition to something better.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. Environment
  3. # 2
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Over the last week I have seen a science paper dating back to 2007 warning of the possibilities of a SAR - Corona virus pandemic from the consumption of wildlife. There is also news trickling through of a link between Covid 19 infection and temperature but yet to see that corroborated by any papers.

This was a crisis always going to happen at some stage. Consumption of animals such as bats, well known vectors of diseases that are capable of jumping to humans, was the obvious route. The trade in wildlife has been tacitly ignored or not dealt with through fears that regulation would drive the market underground. It seems to me it already is underground. What has exacerbated the crisis is the thought in many governments / economies that it is ok to cut health services or hand them over to private industry with the result that countries have no resilience to a major public health crisis like this one. It is not as if this has not happened before, 1918 flu pandemic, more recent smaller-scale outbreaks of ebola and SARs.

The lack of resilience thinking is also buried in our economic structures which place no / little value on nature and hence our unsustainable use of natural resources.
  1. more than a month ago
  2. Environment
  3. # 3
Accepted Answer Pending Moderation
Well, I make myself exactly the same question, as I guess, all of us do.

Somehow, I have the certainty that this is a decisive moment for our civilization to evolve (or not).

As this case is so clear and have directly affected the individual, I was hoping the level of consciousness of our society to increase. However, it looks like the society is somehow divided also in here. Apart from the healthcare specialists, we basically have, generally speaking, those people who are panicking and those people who keep busy, entertained with individualistic, useless stuff. The majority is not wondering about why this episode happened. They do not have the strength nor will to recognize and accept the responsibility that each of us has towards global events. This is not going to help to any sort of "awakening" or change of perception - at least not on an efficient way.

The quite low level of consciousness of our society is due, till great extent, to the fact that people are constantly receiving contradictory messages from media and governments. They all are preaching about sustainable values, but they obviously fail when putting the theory into practice. This is misleading the society in such a way, that people are truly lost regarding the real meaning of basic human values. Hence, till the social scope is not improved, there will be not many chances to really work towards the environmental one - at least not on an efficient way.

On the other hand, especially in democracies, governments are a reflection of their society and vice-versa. A democracy works when the individuals of a society are awakened and count on their own judgement to assess the government's performance. However, if we have a look at most of the democratic countries worldwide, we can see that their societies are divided because they keep identifying their ideals with the ideals of one political party without having the individuals their own discernment. As we can see... this is really dangerous and this episode is somehow serving me to re-affirm my opinion that the world should be `ruled´ by scientists and experts. But as the society is not very critical yet, governmental figures are still necessary. Let's go then for those governments that are already listening to experts!

This is the reason why I think it is essential for us to work with those local communities that have proved being more awaken when we analyze and compare their current socioeconomic panorama to their neighbors'. It is also our responsibility to choose the right collaborators, and it is also our duty to work at a localized level, because changes can only take place when adapted to the one-of-a-kind circumstances of each place.

For sure after this episode passes, all private business will more than ever claim to be "super green". Hence, it is also our responsibility to clearly differentiate from green-washers. Why? So that the society can easier start to discern. How? Well, just providing clear and detailed information about why we are different (easy, if we are) and finding the right collaborators (not that easy, but there are many possibilities if we are consistent and have a driven and coherent attitude).

The level of consciousness, the concept of community and the real understanding of what means living in harmony with Nature are basic for the social perception of environmental threats to be adjusted correctly. And most of Western countries have been deeply disconnected from those concepts for way too long already, so I personally think that it is going to take longer to re-integrate all this in the West than in the East. We'll see!
  1. more than a month ago
  2. Environment
  3. # 4
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