A New Years greeting from TS co-president Bernie Klassen ahead of our monthly meeting this Wednesday night, 7 to 9 p.m., at Harbourside Cohousing, 6669 Horne Rd. in Sooke’s town centre. Everyone is welcome to attend in heeding Bernie’s urgent call to action.
“Happy 2019 to everyone on the Sooke Transition Town mailing list!
2018 was a busy year in Sooke. From the Planet Earth Party: Sooke Region Earth Day Celebration back in April, through issues around transit and pipelines, to the municipal elections, where we made a real difference, we had a heck of a year. Everyone in Transition Sooke needs to take a moment to reflect and, yes, to give ourselves a pat on the back for a job well done.
The Transition Town movement was born in Totnes, UK, only 13 years ago as a way forward in the face of peak oil (which petroleum scientists figure has come and gone, regardless of propaganda to the contrary), and climate heating. Transition Towns have accomplished a great deal, even in the face of government inaction and corporate push-back.
But 2019 dawns in the shadow of two new reports ~ the US Fourth National Climate Assessment and the IPCC Special Report 15 (aka “An International Panel on Climate Change Special Report on the impacts of global warming of 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels and related global greenhouse gas emission pathways, in the context of strengthening the global response to the threat of climate change, sustainable development, and efforts to eradicate poverty”). Both detail the horror-show we knew was coming and now, has already begun.
The IPCC report points out that “pathways limiting global warming to 1.5°C with no or limited overshoot would require rapid and far-reaching transitions in energy, land, urban and infrastructure (including transport and buildings), and industrial systems. These systems transitions are unprecedented in terms of scale, but not necessarily in terms of speed, and imply deep emissions reductions in all sectors. If we followed these pathways, we would have clear emission reductions by 2030.”
2030. That’s only four thousand days away.
We are not on track for those “emission reductions by 2030.” Not here in Sooke, not provincially, not nationally. Not even close. And, according to the Special Report, we are already at 1.0°C of global heating—and we have to hold heating to 1.5°C or less. So business as usual means runaway global heating likely within the lifetimes of those now born.
We have a meeting coming up on January 9. And at that meeting I know that I would like to hear fresh, bigger ideas, new ways forward. This town we love has to become sustainable and we have about 4,000 days to get that done. We also have to think a bit bigger in how we get our provincial and national governments to get off their collective rears and start making hard, significant changes to the way we live our lives.
We’ve done a lot—more than we think we have. But the gun is here and we are under it. We need fresh ideas, fresh faces, fresh energy. Let’s start thinking about how the changes we need are going to happen.”
(image credit: Global University Network for Innovation)