Lots of people ask me why I started My Make Do and Mend Year. And if truth be told, I can’t really remember. I know it was to do with BigSmall constantly wanting magazines, and plastic tat, and being scared that at the age of 3 (as he was then) he was already a mini-consumer. And I remember reading about Suzy Prince and her Second-hand Safari and having a bit of a lightbulb moment. And thinking it would be a pretty cool thing to try and do. But other than that, I don’t remember thinking it would change the world, or even change one person’s buying habits.
But as the year has progressed, the reasons behind My Make Do and Mend Year have become clearer and clearer to me.
I spend a lot of my time on this blog if not overtly trying to encourage people to join me in my Buy Nothing New quest, then at least to think a bit more about what they are buying and consuming.
But I try not to get too preachy about Climate Change as I worry that it will scare people off. I may be doing everyone a disservice, and it certainly seems that most of the people who take the time to leave comments are already pretty on board with the concept of trying to live sustainably, tread lightly and Make Do and Mend, but I know that a lot of people run a mile at the first mention of Global Warming or Climate Change.
I feel a little bit like Climate Change has become the “elephant in the room”.
I know it’s there. It’s big and scary (as much as I like elephants, I do think it would be pretty scary if there actually WAS one in the room) so I skip about talking about planting up wellies and making presents, and not actually talking all that much about the reason this blog is so important to me.
I swing between wanting to engage people who might not have given much thought to the impact that their lifestyle has on the planet, and trying to encourage them to make small changes, that could make a big difference; and wanting to run around with a big sign on my head saying “WE ARE ALL DOOMED” and berating people for putting their cardboard in the black bin.
I have blogged before about Climate Change and feeling scared and helpless. And I had a whole raft of wonderful and inspiring comments from everyone.
But I still feel a little bit as though I don’t dare mention Climate Change, for fear of putting people off, when what I am trying to do is to engage them.
But the fact of the matter is, as much as I dress it up in all the fripperies and loveliness of Making Do and Mending, this blog is all about Climate Change, and my little corner of the world, and trying to live sustainably, and do what I can to create change on a wider scale.
I feel like we are a great big self-destructing juggernaut hurtling headlong towards disaster.
The other day, someone was asking about why I recycled and what I thought was going to happen. I was asked if I thought there was going to be a big explosion. And I don’t. It will be far, far worse than that.
We have a global population of 7 billion, give or take. And it is rising. (Estimated to be NINE BILLION by 2050, and then what..?) The world is only so big and there is only much land. So more people=less land to go around, for us and for all the plants and animals we share our planet with.
We will destroy more and more of the natural habitat to make room for our growing population.
We will hack down forests, and with them the lungs of the earth, that suck in our carbon dioxide, and they will be replaced with dry, arid wastelands where very little grows.
We will destroy the habitats of the wild animals and then be outraged when they are driven into contact with humans and come into conflict.
We will continue to pump out CO2 into the atmosphere-causing the greenhouse effect to get worse and worse and the global temperatures to rise. The polar ice caps will melt. Sea levels will rise and we will have less land. And more people to fit on less land.
The oil will run out. We will fight more and more for less and less oil.
The acidity of our seas will rise, we will over-fish and deplete our oceans, and they will end up barren.
We will not be able to provide enough food or enough clean water.
In short. It will be some kind of apocalyptic scenario.
So, I guess what I am saying, is this blog IS about Climate Change. And living sustainably. And how we should all try.
This blog IS about trying to make us all stop and think about how our individual actions impact on our planet.
I will continue to try and approach the whole Big Issue, in a light-hearted way, and to use carrots rather than big scary burning planet sticks (this post aside) but I felt like it needed saying. And maybe to warn you that there may be a few more rants as the end of My Make Do and Mend Year approaches, and I feel my way towards working out what the blog has been for, and how it can have the impact I want it to have.
My name is Jen, and this blog is about Climate Change, and Living Sustainably and Saving the World.
Now if I could just remember where I left my cape….