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Moments Can Either Make Us Or Break Us

By Amrita Dass

Moments. Some filled with the power and authenticity to create the most enchantingly beautiful experiences that washes over us and brings with them a sea of meaning and hope for a brighter tomorrow. Others, so terrifyingly overwhelming that they leave us with an ocean of scars embedded in our lives, making it almost impossible to regain control of any sanity left within us.

Amrita Dass is currently a university student enrolled in The University of The West Indies, St Augustine, pursing a double major in Biology and Environmental Science

It is, however, how we choose to handle each moment thrown mercilessly at us that defines us in our weakest moments and acts as a pillar of strength in our darkest times.

For any environmental activist out there, Earth Day 2016 can be undoubtedly classified as one of the most historic and glorified moments recorded in history thus far. An astounding 175 countries momentously signed the Paris Agreement, making the climate pledge to adopt the strategies necessary to create and continue along the path of a decarbonised economy.

We, as a global community, however, should not be fulfilled by this act. We need to make the most of this moment and take matters into our own hands. The signing of the Paris agreement only signifies the first step in the UN process and can take months, maybe even years to come into full effect.

The rate at which our environment has already suffered and been depleted as a result of climate effects is devastatingly alarming, and no longer should we continue to be oblivious to the fact that oil industries and their partnering politicians have contributed largely to the contamination of the Earth’s atmosphere, through the continuous release of toxic gases.

This phenomenon has escalated to such a drastic extent that currently the Caribbean community is being threatened by a massive sea level rise, which will continue to persist vigorously over the next 30 years. This will not only cause mass destruction to our coastlines and aquatic habitats, but additionally result in a fiscal burden on both our tourism sector and fishing industry.

Correspondingly, the Water Resources Agency has released a national report, warning the public that sea storms have been becoming more frequent and powerful over the years, so much so, that it has led to the migratory patterns of many of our local fish species and the destruction of our wetlands, as well as its associated biodiversity.

With the realization that our Caribbean region continues to face such adverse environmental effects as a result of climate change, it is truly a shock that the public has little interest in this matter and turns a blind eye on the importance of participating in one of the largest coordinated civil disobedience actions currently occurring across the globe.

A colour embedded in history to be associated with the vibrancy and fierceness of patriotism during the early French Revolution, now represents, with the same vigour of dedication and passionate persistence, the collaboration of climate activists gathered in Wales to shut down the UK’s largest coal mine.

On the morning of May 3, 2016, adorned in red attire, a group of environmental activists assembled at one of the largest coal mines – Ffos-y-Fran – using their bodies and banners as a barrier to temporarily shut down the coal mine, but permanently send a message to millions that now is the time to take a stance and finally break free from our global fossil fuel dependency.

These protests have escalated admiringly over the past couple weeks, as determined individuals who understand the urgency to accelerate the shift to 100% renewable energy have provided the leadership skills necessary to intensify these actions at a rapid rate and target some of the wealthiest oil companies and demand that governments take the initiative to move past the commitments made during the Paris Agreement.

May 8, 2016, was more than likely just a regular day in the life of any Caribbean inhabitant. For Australians, however, an unforgettable experience was bubbling right across the globe as we remained unbothered and engaged in our daily routine.

Over 600 individuals gathered intimidatingly at one of the largest coal ports in the world, located in Newcastle. Using their voices and assertiveness as weapons, they were determined to leave behind a trail of victory and ensure that climate change and ways to rectify it is a key issue in the upcoming elections.

It is crucial that the Caribbean region adopts the persistence and passion necessary, so that we can work together to practice similar procedures to create a voice for ourselves and achieve a more environmentally friendly community. Additionally, the government needs to support this movement, by immediately implementing the climate commitments they submitted in Paris earlier this year.

Morocco leads by example by recently developing one of the world’s largest solar power plants in recorded history and India is already starting to increase its renewable energy capacity. Strategies and operations needs to be carefully planned by our governments so that alternative forms of energy can be considered and developed accordingly.

When given a moment in history like the Paris Agreement that can define our entire future energy distribution worldwide, we should approach it with fierceness and passion and use our voices and independence as a united force to take full advantage of this moment so that we can claim victory once and for all when we finally Breakfree from our fossil fuel dependency.



Category/ies:Articles, Regional Articles, Solar Energy.
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