Creating a Viable Future: Yeah Really

The climate is gushing CO2; the oceans are bleeding acid—tipping points are right around the corner.  Without a U-Turn on carbon fuels we will cook ourselves to death. So, how do we create a viable future amidst all of the grim news? This blog provides a plausible answer, starting from outlining what is needed for us to collectively decide to stop the poisoning.


History demonstrates that it takes just 3.5% of engaged, passionate citizens to achieve change.

Photo: People's Climate March

  • The Public would need to hear that a humanity-crippling, interconnected set of crises is on our doorstep. To accomplish change, public support is essential.
  • 15-20% of us would need to grasp the scope, scale, and urgency. For example: We must stabilize climate under a 2°C heat increase ceiling; i.e., we must reduce fossil fuels 5%/year for 2 generations.
  • A cultural conversation between and among this 15-20% would occur. Specifics related to accomplishing scale reductions could be achieved. The Deep Decabonization Pathways Project is an example.
  • Not more than 3.5% of the public would need to be actively engaged so that actions consistent with holding to the heat ceiling are accomplished, and other related constructive actions follow.
  • Less than .4% of the public would need to be the actual hurricane wind, organized, mobilized and coordinated to drive transformation and a viable future.   

NOW, for the MEANS 

Bill and Melinda Gates, along with Warren Buffett created The Giving Pledge through which 128 Billionaires have now pledged an estimated $300 Billion to Philanthropic causes.  With just 3% of the pledged funds, the $10 billion devoted can engender a viable future.

  • Three billion dollars is plenty when dispensed over all media channels, social media, TV and movies, and volunteers knocking on doors……….. so that everyone in the US will hear about looming crises.
  • A couple billion dollars more will assure that the 15-20% of us have the conversation that details the degree of the crises and its moral implications. The civic spaces and congregation social halls are ready and willing to host these conversations.
  • Five billion dollars will assure that at least 3.5% of us are involved in the campaign and that .4% of us are driving the winds of change. Thus the campaign leading to constructive transformation is complete.

So, if Philanthropists decide to provide a future, they have tons of money to do just that.  It is more likely if we ask them and explain that they are blowing a lot of good money on temporary fixes, when root causes are ready to be addressed. They could move if we decide to let go of resignation, dis-empowerment, and couch potatoeism—a peculiar 21st Century malady.

Finally, the US must lead on these crises or we all go under, thus the US-centric focus.



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