“Our environmental problems are so big, individual actions don’t matter. Only governments and corporations can make a difference.” I’ve come to see this view as backward.
Governments and corporations are causing the problems. They are what we have to change. If we wait for them to act, we will lose. When you recognize that we have to motivate them to act, you realize they are the problem. I include universities too.
I hope this message helps change the situation. Eventually government, corporations, and universities will become a part of the solution so I believe we as individuals have to work to influence them and never let up. Like moving the rudder of a supertanker shows no visible change, but hours later thee boat is moving in a new direction.
Maybe better analogy is that we are the tugboats that can maneuver them effectively because they’re too clumsy to on their own. They only know to go forward. Tug boats can move in any direction.
People in these large organizations lack passion. They have what I call corporate passion—a desire to succeed by corporate rules, which aren’t the person’s own. They reached their positions by the organization’s values which they want to protect. They’re co-opted.
As everyone knows, we have to act fast to avert environmental disaster. We often achieve more doing the opposite of what these organizations say. If Coca-Cola says to recycle, they mean buy their product. Don’t buy it. If a university suggests taking courses and getting a degree in sustainability, I suggest you’ll achieve more in the world, not taking the course. Science is important, but we know more than enough to act and we know how to implement the most important solutions.
I doubt you’ll go wrong considering most of government, universities, and corporations most interested in moving slowly and ineffectively—tantamount to being an enemy.
Individuals acting first will influence these organizations most. The most effective action you can take is to act yourself and to learn to lead others.
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