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    The Paris Climate Agreement – It’s Personal

    It was hard to miss the news coverage of the COP21 climate summit, which wrapped up two weeks of negotiations and many months of preparation in Paris on Saturday. All the different interpretations of the outcome reveal whether the writer is a “glass half full” or “glass half empty” person. The agreements themselves are not enough to prevent disruptive climate change, but they are a huge step forward and they establish momentum, which may result in better progress in coming years. Here’s a good assessment from TriplePundit.com, including this, from Andrew Deutz of The Nature Conservancy:

    “In order to understand the climate process, you’ve got to be somewhat bipolar. Because one hemisphere of your brain has to look at the science and say, ‘We are desperately behind where we need to be.’… The other side of your brain is saying, ‘Look where the politics are; look at the progress that we’re making.’ … This isn’t just about climate change. This is about the world’s ability to demonstrate cooperation in the face of a global challenge.”

    Since Greener Daily Life is not about public policy, but about our personal daily lives, what does the Paris agreement mean to us, one person at a time, trying to live a slightly greener life every day? To me, two things:

    1. I can gradually make lifestyle changes that reduce my personal impact on the environment – things like eating less meat, especially less beef, and buying renewable power at home. I’ll be exploring this subject regularly in this new blog. Subscribe here to be notified as I post, and please be patient with me as I start slowly. I’ll do my best to keep it short and sweet.

    2. I’ll support the innovators and entrepreneurs who are reinventing business not just to be more sustainable, but to be awesome inside and out. That’s what GreenerDailyLife.com is all about. Simply by buying from them the things I’d buy anyway, I can contribute to building a sustainable economy.

    For example, I don’t have to stop drinking coffee, even though it’s an enormously destructive crop, because companies like those highlighted on GreenerDailyLife.com are radically changing the coffee business. They are buying organic, sustainably farmed, shade-grown coffee beans, paying fair prices to farmers, powering their roasting facilities with renewable energy, composting and recycling waste, and planting trees to offset the rest of their carbon footprints. And they are producing delicious coffee. Greening my coffee habit is both easily doable and important.

    Following the Paris agreement, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said this:

    “Markets now have the signal they need to unleash human ingenuity and low-carbon growth.”

    Exactly. That’s what the brands we highlight do every day. Please join me in supporting them.

    “Preserving life should be the natural result of commerce, not the exception.”
    – “The Ecology of Commerce,” by Paul Hawken

     

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