Love is the answer. The question: How do we nurture hope in the face of unremittingly bad news?
As I looked over my notes, thinking about this week’s letter to you, my heart broke again and again:
Devastating Australian wildfires fueled by hot temperatures and unusual drought conditions. Beijing adopts emergency smog measures — Chinese air pollution so dense people cannot see past their hands. Warmer winters across North America and soaring tick populations, with moose populations in steep decline and many other species heading towards extinction, and a medically-established link between cancer and air pollution.Sometimes it feels like we need a miracle to stop the pollution that is changing our climate. I won’t go on.
Today, I want to focus on why we care about all this — and how much power we have to change it. Where is our magic? Peter Pan tells us to save Tinkerbell by clapping our hands. Dorothy taps those ruby slippers and chants, “There’s no place like home, there’s no place like home.” There is no place like home; it is the place we love. And that love is what keeps us going. We cherish this world, and we want our children to have their chance to love it. Not a single day goes by that I do not pause in what I am doing to admire something absolutely positively marvelously incredibly amazing: the way a young woman guides a feeble old man slowly across the street, the way a praying mantis leans back on its spiky green haunches, the way the moon lights a path through the woods.
As in Oz, there is no powerful wizard. There is only a grumpy, human soul working behind a curtain. That would be…any of us, on many days. We can only do our parts. Even if it seems a very little bit — a pull on a lever here, a yank at a crank there — it matters that we do our parts. We keep the love going.
Coal plant emissions are already dropping — partly because of natural gas. But those drops are not big enough to get us to safety. And we have to make sure methane, another potent greenhouse gas, isn’t turning out to be a bigger problem. And, we need a global effort — a renewable energy race of epic proportions. Luckily, there’s enough love of the world to go all the way round it. Love — and hard work.
That’s what makes miracles happen.