Global Climate Strike, 2019.
The Global Climate Strike recently took place this past Friday, September 27, 2019, and I set out to both capture and be a part of it. It was a truly interesting experience to witness the countless droves of individuals (preferably referred to as activists) take to the streets of Toronto in support of climate resilience.
As a marketer, and one who has tangentially studied Global Economics as part of that discipline, it’s a bit of a hard-sell for me to think that we’re just suddenly going to unravel all that we have built up and change our entire socio, political and economic structure here in the West (let alone, globally). That’s not to say standing against climate change isn’t an altruistic or worthwhile endeavour; it’s just to ask a few more hard-hitting questions…
How will moving away from fossil fuels affect globalization and logistics when we (the West, especially) rely so heavily on it for transporting goods around the globe? Sure, the end-product may present itself to be Green (like the electric car), but unless the entire supply chain is filtered through a Green lens, then we may just be fooling ourselves here. If ‘There is no Planet B’, is that to assume that all of Elon Musk’s efforts are in vein with regard to SpaceX? After all, he was instrumental in the resurgence of popularity for the electric car—so, why doubt him now? Have we looked at what products rely on oil that are presumably evil, but we unwittingly rely on them for all aspects of our lives? Paints, plastics and rubbers all rely on the extraction of oil, too… Since our economic structure is so heavily entrenched in the stock and trade of oil, how will this affect most Western countries? Did you know that Saudi Arabia (one of the largest producers of oil) is also an investor in growing tech start ups here in the West? Where would venture capitalists be without oil? Are we ready for a potential political power shift, where, economically, the West may lag behind if it completely gives up on oil? Did you know that if you did just a bit of research, you’d see that Canada contributes a mere 2% to the total carbon emissions around the world, with India and China being top contributors of up to 80%? So, does the solution lie here or elsewhere? As we have all benefited from fossil fuel economics so greatly in the past (and admittedly still do to this day), are we all really willing to just give that all up?
I’m not saying that activism is wrong, I’m not saying that standing up for what you believe in is pointless, I’m merely suggesting that education is paramount before making any request. A problem is only a problem if you have a viable solution for it—not a megaphone and an agenda—or else you would not be solving, you’d just be complaining. Solutions are necessary, but solutions require extensive research, critical thinking and logic. Climate change is very real, that’s undeniable; but what we are going to do about it is still up in the air.
Check out my highlight video of the event, below: