Saturday, September 19, 2009

Climate change is getting personal -- tell me YOUR story

The post in which Julia explains what kept her from IMS for five days.

I love campaign launches -- the strategy, the ideas, the breathless anticipation. (Not so much with last-minute changes and long days, but hey, they get you where you need to be.)

Launches are even more exciting when they're centered around critical issues, because then you suddenly connect to an entire community of people passionate about and committed to a similar cause. And in this case, the cause couldn't be more urgent: stop climate change.

Enter It's Getting Personal, a grassroots-facing initiative designed to highlight climate change's immediate and dire impacts on humans. As we say on the site, it's not just about polar bears on ice floes -- it's about people too, and what will happen to them and the things they love most.

It can be as big as losing your coastal home to rising sea levels and erosion. But it's also as basic as not having French wine anymore, because higher temperatures will push vineyard production north to Scotland. Or about eating pancakes dry, because warmer climes are sapping sap away ... which means no maple syrup.

Some people might say that bringing climate change to this level is flippant. How can we possibly compare destroying indigenous cultures to giving up a favorite treat?

But I disagree. It's easy to ignore climate change when you never visit Antarctica and don't see the ice melting. It's far harder to turn a blind eye when the things that make up your daily life start disappearing. So by putting climate change at the kitchen table, we better show just how pervasive and dire it is.

Our immediate target, of course, are the Copenhagen climate talks in December, where we hope to influence a global climate change agreement by sharing your deeply personal stories with world leaders and demonstrating the human impact.

After that, though, we'll have to reevaluate. Right now, the buzz surrounding Copenhagen is pessimistic. WSJ says the talks are in danger of failure. Reuters warns success is not guaranteed. So if the deal is as impotent as everyone fears, our quest to save our rock will become much more Sisyphean.

That's why we need to act now. And it's as simple as telling your story. What will you miss? What will you lose? What is climate change taking away from you as we speak?

Submit your story here at ItsGettingPersonal.com. It can be photo, video, or text. Send what you uploaded to friends and family. And check yes for updates so you can stay posted on further action.

Share now -- help save later. Thank you so much for adding your voice to the cause!

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