Dr. Elizabeth Sawin Profile picture
Earthling. Co-founder co-director @climateinteract. Multisolving for people and climate. She/her TEDx talk: https://t.co/Z56MZvHqUL
LesKatSpr Profile picture Herb Simmens Profile picture So Let Me Just Be Plain 🗣❤️ Profile picture Buck Borasky, Frontier Programmer Profile picture Scott Kloos Profile picture 12 added to My Authors
24 Nov
It has come to my attention that some people who are clearly climate leaders according to the Beth Sawin definition seem to question if the words "climate leader" apply to them. I find that interesting and maybe cause for concern.
I am reminded of how years ago I taught in a sustainability leadership program and many of the participants (the program consisted of significantly more than half women) didn't feel they rose to the meaning of leader.
I learned then, and wonder if it's still true now, that the common place definition of leader in the dominant culture includes attributes like "strong, certain, decisive, assertive, authoritative."
Read 6 tweets
22 Nov
The connections in a system shape its behavior over time.
To change the behavior change the connections.
If you don’t change the connections the system will continue to produce the behavior.
Thus tweet brought to you by the 5th wave of covid in the US.
New connections in this case could be flows of information like consistent messaging about keeping each other safe.
They could be new programs, like community based public health workers fitting masks, helping with testing, boosters, and education.
Read 5 tweets
19 Nov
Though I often talk about a phase down of fossil fuel use, that in itself is not a vision. We need visions (plural) full of detail. What does a world where everyone has what they need independent of fossil fuel use look like, feel like, taste like, smell like?
What is a day in that world like in your city? In my northern small town? In a coastal city near the equator? Picture it in as much detail as you can possibly imagine.
What are you eating, where did it come from, who grew it, sold, it cooked it and how? What is it like when you are sure that every step of whole process protected (or at least didn't harm) the climate?
Read 8 tweets
18 Nov
Now that we've reached the point that all the industrial growth society has left to offer people is escape to to a metaverse* surely we who can envision a just & sustainable future have a competitive advantage.
*not even a equitable, creative metaverse, but a monopoly controlled, white male imagined one
Friendship, solidarity, laughter. Heartache and hard work yes, but heartache and hard work shared. Engineering puzzles, cultures to transform, new stories to tell, all of it such human work, with such potential to give meaning and purpose.
Read 6 tweets
16 Nov
If you don't like what fossil fuels do to the climate wait 'til you hear what they do to your lungs.
If you don't like what fossil fuels do to your lungs wait 'til you hear what they do to freshwater.
If you don't like what fossil fuels do to freshwater wait 'til you hear what they do to coastlines as oil spills.
Read 5 tweets
14 Nov
The thing is the equitable, care-based, circular, locally rooted, globally in-solidarity world we need to create is going to be so much nicer to live in.
Why yes I would like to call the local worker owned cooperative that employs my neighbors when the solar panels on the barn need upgrading, knowing that the old panels will be recycled with high efficiency and the new ones were manufactured under safe working conditions.
Come to think of it, I would like to have a safe way to ride my bicycle to the train station that connects me to any city in my country. And I am certain that I will taste the love and stewardship in the breakfast sandwich and hot tea I buy at that train station.
Read 7 tweets
12 Nov
I heard there's a meeting wrapping up in Scotland that could have agreed that the thin membrane that supports all life on Earth is something sacred held in trust for the future.
I heard that there's an incredibly dangerous poison safely wrapped up in the Earth's crust and those there Scotland could have headed the call to act as intergenerational protectors of those deposits.
I heard that many things are uncertain, but that the great powers could have agreed that they'd work together so that the risks and rewards of a period of massive change are shared equitably, with regard to past contributions to the dangers we face.
Read 4 tweets
9 Nov
I pledge to clean my desk by 2030.
Not sure when I will start tbh, because I need to keep adding to the piles for a while.
Here's a nice graph, showing the very steep expected decline in desk mess, hitting zero in 2030.
Thank you.
If you have a messy desk that you would definitely not be cleaning under ordinary circumstances, and which if it did get cleaned up would never ever get messy again and if, in exchange for a weekly gift card, you'd be willing to clean it soon, let's talk.
And if you are expert in mess monitoring and would be willing to visit my friends desk, to make sure she wouldn't have cleaned it anyway, and then once she does clean to make sure that it never gets messy again and also....
Read 4 tweets
4 Nov
I would like to start collecting $1 for every instance someone tells me "that's impossible" for something that is a change in culture, worldview, or systemic structure, aspects of systems that are not constrained by physical factors.
Sharing, love, facing past harms, choosing to embrace feedback (from science, that is observation or in relationships, that is opening oneself to inquire about the wellbeing of the "other".
These are limited by the capacities of our hearts and imaginations, but not by physical laws like gravity of the climate sensitivity to a doubling of carbon.
Read 8 tweets
3 Nov
If domination and separation got us here, why would you expect them to get us out of here?
If growth of material throughput without regards to limits or equitable distribution got us here, why would you expect them to get us out of here?
If a power structure based on structural inequity got us here, why would you expect to get us out of here?
Read 5 tweets
3 Nov
How’s that air pollution conference in Glasgow going?
Oh you mean that conference on intergenerational equity?
No. The one on gender and justice.
Read 6 tweets
30 Oct
Remember how even in less destabilized times COPs were a demonstration of international inequity? How developed countries sent large delegations and smaller less wealthy countries could have trouble participating in concurrent sessions because their delegations were small?
Or remember how much deeper the expense of international travel stings for small grassroots or Indigenous led organizations?
Then remember how when the COP moved from Chile to Madrid at the last minute how much more of an obstacle the need to book new travel was for observer organizations who might not have the resources for a whole second round of plane tickets and hotel reservations?
Read 10 tweets
28 Oct
Picture this: billions of people finding purpose and meaning reshaping our communities to fit into our ecologies.
I can't think of anything that could call more on our intellect, our capacity to connect, our capacity to dream, our endurance of hard work, our potential for joy, our commitment to future generations, and for many of us our capacity to learn from cultures wiser than our own.
Of course it would be hard. Of course it's late and the stakes are high. Of course some would come to the work later than others, and of course there'd be something of resistance to change in all of us.
Read 4 tweets
27 Oct
Oh just end fossil fuels already.
and share vaccines equitably while you're at it
and protect the water and act like you live on a planet cause you do
Read 6 tweets
26 Oct
I wish gentleness for you. In your home. In your work. In your collaborations. Enough time and open space to feel and sense make.
I wish gentleness for the earth. Just a quiet softening. A green opening. A deep breath. Misunderstandings cleared up. Mistakes learned from.
It's a struggle, at least it is for me, to move forward to meet crises with a different way of being that which created it. Just stretching for that stance within the systems we now occupy is a hard day's work.
Read 4 tweets
26 Oct
I actually think many of the things we need to do to make space for everyone to live well within the biosphere's capacity are pretty appealing and would be to many if we could describe that world.
It would start with huge investment in shared support..public healthcare, education, transportation, housing.
So many fewer cars. Breathing easier. 10 years olds safe to explore on their bikes. Denser, jobs and school within reach for all.
Read 6 tweets
26 Oct
Imagine a thermostat that day after day said "the room is too cold" and a furnace that refused to deliver more heat. The scientists writing the #EmissionsGap report are the thermostat and governments are the furnace.
Put another way: Reporting a gap doesn't close a gap without activation of a gap closing mechanism. Measuring test scores doesn't on its own increase learning. Taking your temperature doesn't cure a fever.
For more than a decade these tireless scientists (I was one of them for the first few years) do a really complicated job, and boil it down: "made some progress, further to go."
Read 7 tweets
21 Oct
What if there was a timetable for phasing out fossil fuels & the COP was a global meeting of creatives, social scientists, ethicists, farmers, public health experts, engineers, spiritual leaders, and the like collaborating to carry the world safely through the transition?
That'd be a global gathering I'd be excited about!
It's actually a very creative and generative problem at the heart of things, if only we could get to that part....
Read 4 tweets
20 Oct
If we renamed the atmosphere the metaverse then would giant corporations respect it?
Also, if I'm understanding the metaverse is a virtual world we will go to find escape because the real one is dystopian. Which is an internally consistent business plan I guess...trash the world, and sell tickets to escape somewhere better. With or without a rocket ship.
Finally, a small alternate business plan: Invest in the real living web (aka, participate as a carbon based life form in the wider living web, commensurate with our responsibilities and embodying mutual respect).
Read 5 tweets
20 Oct
One of the turns we need to make I think is from ignoring "sacrifice zones" to acting to protect "early warning zones".
We need new collective neural pathways that have anyone who is momentarily safe able see the communities at sea level, at the refinery fenceline, in the hurricane zone, under the heat dome as so worthy of protection that we act to protect our own future too.
It's like time travel. Those in most danger are just ahead of those in less danger.
Read 5 tweets
2 Oct
Vaccines, masks, ventilation, sick leave, contact tracing, healthy environments, equity, justice, support for other countries to do the same.
Extraction bans, clean energy build out, energy efficiency, regenerative agriculture, ecosystem restoration, public transportation, dense housing, walkability, less consumption, equity, justice, social safety net for a just transition, support for other countries to do the same
Profit motivated high technology. Simple scalable everyday technology. Public investment. Cooperative networks. Global solidarity. We can, we must, do more than one thing at a time.
Read 9 tweets