How to be a Humankind Superhero (HKSuperH)
Climate Change is Going to Impact Us All: Even You
HKSuperH is to Inspire & Empower You to Act to Reclaim a Safe Climate
Global Warming and the resultant Climate Change is a uniquely human problem. It transcends politics: the two countries with the greatest responsibility for it, China and the US, could hardly have more different political histories and systems.
At the heart of the problem of global warming and the resultant climate change is our choice of fuel for the majority of our activities. Although there is sufficient solar energy hitting the planet to power human activity many thousands of times over, we find it easier to use fossil fuels. It is primarily the excess production of carbon dioxide from burning fossil fuels that is driving the problem of global warming. What makes the problem of global warming and the resultant climate change the more difficult to tackle is that we have built our economic activity around the extraction and consumption of fossil fuels and other natural resources. The current way of accounting for our economic activity actually makes us think we are richer today for destroying tomorrow. The reality is, there can be no prosperity in a climate wrecked world.
Through the United Nations, the world has been examining climate science and produced four major reviews: each one has become surer of the dimensions and cause of the problem of global warming and resultant climate change. Through the United Nations the world has also been talking about finding solutions to global warming for nearly twenty years but still appears some way off making agreement on substantial action. As for the mainstream public of the world’s big polluters the issue is widely acknowledged but barely discussed in terms of action.
"Speaking as a politician, I can promise you this: political leaders will not take risks if the people do not demand that they do.
You must create the change you want to see."
You must create the change you want to see."
President Barack Obama, March 2013
‘How to be a Humankind Superhero: making you actions count more than a bit’ is a book that uses the myth of Hercules to inspire and empower individuals who want to help break the deadlock and implement the solutions to Global Warming.
First published in 2010, it was described as 'a fine and heartfelt piece of work' (Iain Banks, author) that 'hits that elusive balance between the analytical and the practical' (Jonathan Porritt, environmentalist & author). The fully updated and revised edition was released in 2013 and is available as a free PDF download or to buy in e-reader formats.
The chapters of the book guide you through impactful actions you can take to lessen your own contribution to the problem of global warming and the resultant climate change. It shows you how can act to reduce your carbon emisssions through multiple strategies like modifying transport methods, fitting solar panels, reviewing your diet, recycling and planting trees. It also explains how to lobby business and government to implement solutions to global warming and the resultant climate change on a bigger scale.
As a taster of the book’s style, watch the video to hear the author explain how we have inadvertently constructed our economic systems to bring us into the situation where global warming and the resultant climate change is moving toward being a threat to the continuation of life on the planet Earth.
Economics is the study of how the forces of supply and demand allocate scarce resources but the way we account for our economic activity makes the ludicrous assumption that the Earth’s resources and services available without limit. As such, there need be no cost assigned to their use. This has brought us to a situation where it is almost always cheaper to pollute than protect.
Price plays a critical role in markets, but the free market is distorted by treating the primary resource as the thing that is "free". The basis of this thinking was the 18th-century Enlightenment, when human population was much lower: the assumptions on how we could use natural resources were workable then. A world population of 500 million using a resource at a rate that would appear to have it last 500 years could be forgiven for thinking 10 generations was sufficiently far away to be ignored. Unfortunately the same resource would be consumed by a 7 billion population in just over 35 years.
The solution to global warming and the resultant climate change will, ultimately be found not in the privation of the few but a change in our shared imagination of how we do things. And the quickest way to achieve that is a fundamental change in how we account for our activities. Quite simply, we need our money system to stop pretending that the Earth is infinite.
The world has the institutions in place to make this happen but lacks the political will. That is where you come in.
By adopting a life style that will reduce carbon emissions you earn the right to demand that politicians and business act to make it easier for you to do so.
"Never doubt that a small band of committed individuals can change the world. Often, it is the only thing that ever does."
"We are faced with the fact, my friends, that tomorrow is today. We are confronted with the fierce urgency of now. In this unfolding conundrum of life and history there is such a thing as being too late. Procrastination is still the thief of time. Life often leaves us standing bare, naked and dejected with a lost opportunity. The ‘tide in the affairs of men’ does not remain at the flood; it ebbs. We may cry out desperately for time to pause in her passage, but time is deaf to every plea and rushes on. Over the bleached bones and jumbled residues of numerous civilizations are written the pathetic words: ‘Too late.’"
Martin Luther King
These quotes were not directed at those finding solutions to global warming but are relevant. We can change the world and we must, for if we do not, future generations will be dejected that we lost the opportunity to reclaim a safe climate.