Apple tree by Marina Khrapova via Unsplash

Is anyone still counting the number of days of “COVID Confinement”? Or, have you moved on to counting the number of weeks, or months?

With our attention being focused on the pandemic, and systemic racism, the media and others have forgotten that the Earth is concurrently in a climate crisis. Some aspects of our natural environment have improved while “the economy” has been operating in slow motion. Air quality has improved in many cities as people drive and fly less; carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere have not risen as much this year as in the past years; we hear the birds in the morning rather than traffic, and so on.

Many people are now looking forward to a “return to “normal”. Do you remember what “normal” was doing to the Earth’s environment?

  • A world of species extinction and hyper-consumerism
  • A world of an ever increasing disparity of wealth / equity / and racism
  • A world of the car culture and the combustion engine belching polluting gasses

BUT, we don’t have to return to that “normal”. Before the pandemic arrived, BUC’s Environmental Action Group was working to make a better world on three levels: personal, community, and as a society. Now is the opportunity to make a difference because change is in the air, and many people don’t want to return to the “old normal”. As Dr. Kwame McKenzie says, “Normal was the problem.”

What would the “New Normal” look like? Some examples, for our consideration, are:

  • A society that puts people – and inclusion – first, recognizing our inter-relatedness with all people, and all of creation
  • A society that does not pay $40 Billion in subsidies to the fossil fuel industry
  • A society that retro-fits housing and other buildings to reduce their carbon footprint
  • A society that uses public street space for additional forms of transportation, such as buses, bicycles and pedestrians

We need to talk! As Gandhi said, “Be the change you want to see in the world.” The Environmental Action Group at BUC is talking about “where do we go from here?”

  • How do we want to live as Christians in the “New Normal” – both individually and as a community?
  • How can we be effective in advocating for an economy that puts people before profit, and includes people of all cultures and skin colours? What groups will be our partners?
  • How will we care for each other, and the Earth, in the “New Normal”?
  • How will we, “seek justice for the Earth and its people” (BUC Green Charter)

We will put our energy into action; join us for a Sunday Session via Zoom, August 23, 10.30 am

“The next few months are precious. Things have changed quickly.
We can imagine the “New Normal”.
Naomi Klein

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