Learn what you can do to help the environment

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Let us start the New Year understanding that there are two big battles to win. If the world’s governments treated climate change the way they have COVID, there would be a chance at saving the earth’s future for your grandchildren.

According to a government report, Canada is warming at nearly twice the global rate! Our sea ice is melting, ice shelves disintegrating, permafrost melting, we get less snow and frost and more fluctuating temperatures.

Weather records are toppling and causing reactions which affect our climate, causing more extreme weather which include heat waves, wildfires, droughts, flooding, intense rains, ice, hail and severe storms, affecting humans, wildlife, plant life and causing billions of dollars in damage.

The Northwest Passage shipping route was the busiest ever but they are already looking towards being able to cut right over top the North Pole! The permafrost is melting.

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Wildfires, including those in the US, sent their smoke/carbon up to Canada to further attack the ozone layer and affecting the health of many people.

Canada.ca’s Top 10 weather stories were: 10. August long weekend storms; 9. Fall in Canada (winter in the west, summer in the east); 8. Frigid spring helps Canadians self-isolate; 7. The year’s most powerful tornado; 6. Record hurricane season; 5. St. John’s ‘snowmageddon;’ 4. Endless hot summer in the east; 3. Fort McMurray’s flood of a century; 2. B.C.’s September skies – all smoke, no fires; and 1. Calgary’s billion dollar hail storm with tennis ball size hail.

There were hundreds of stories to choose from coast to coast. And all the above disasters affected surrounding areas and too often more than one province.

Here, we had no spring, then a heat wave that never ended which actually warmed up the Great Lakes. Lake Ontario’s record was 25C! That changes growth beneath the waves and affects everything under the waves. The heat waves, droughts, storms and flooding affected the growth and amount of our crops harvested.

COVID didn’t slow down mother nature, although it did allow us to see what nature could be like if we were not out messing it up, and it did consume the news, pushing climate change events into hiding.

Ask someone you know what they do to help the environment? Standard answer is: I recycle. Well, you have been doing that for years and in Tillsonburg we have gone from a wet/dry system that was superb, to a blue box system that missed too many items and lately that was even slashed to remove light plastics, Styrofoam and more. What did you do about that? What about compostable? Watch for my article next week to see some of the more unusual things you can do in recycling.

When will we open our minds to the fact that we are responsible for pushing our local municipal and county officials – and MP and MPPs – for needed changes? Start by reading reputable sources. Learn what you can do to help at home and work. Start talking with family and friends and do something.

In lockdown, where do people turn? To nature – by going for walks, sitting in yards, feeding the birds, and marvelling at all the animals who came out of hiding.

If nothing is done today, where will your descendants turn when a new pandemic strikes?

lbeechey@rogers.com

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