Climate Justice

Climate Justice

Hope, Resilience, and the Fight for A Sustainable Future

Book - 2018
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"An urgent call to arms by one of the most important voices in the international fight against climate change, sharing inspiring stories and offering vital lessons for the path forward." -- From book jacket.
At the birth of her first grandchild, Robinson's fight for climate change became deeply personal. Her travels led to a heartening revelation: that an irrepressible driving force in the battle for climate justice could be found at the grassroots level, mainly among women, many of them mothers and grandmothers like herself. Now she presents a stirring manifesto on one of the most pressing humanitarian issues of our time, and a lucid, affirmative, and well-argued case for hope.-- adapted from jacket.
Publisher: New York : Bloomsbury Publishing, 2018
Copyright Date: ©2018
ISBN: 9781632869289
Characteristics: xii, 162 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm


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Feb 23, 2020

On Friday February 14 I had the honor and privilege of hearing Mary Robinson speak about Climate Justice to a group here in Seattle. I am a huge fan of the book Drawdown: The Most Comprehensive Plan Ever Proposed to Reverse Global Warming, edited by Paul Hawken. So is Mary Robinson. We both know that the science and technology exist to solve global warming and climate change; we simply need the political will to scale them up and implement them widely. Climate change and global warming are solvable, but we need to act NOW. Time is running out. This should be a moon-shot priority for every nation on earth!

Mary Robinson was not here to talk about the science and technology available to solve climate change. She was here to talk about the connection between climate change and human rights.

The people who are most affected by climate change are those who have done the least to cause it, and those who have the least resources to address solutions. And they are well aware that the climate change disasters happening in their lives today are directly caused by the lifestyles of people in wealthy countries who do not want to give up their privileged lifestyle to save the planet. She was talking about all of us. As she noted near the end of her talk, there is a fear of giving up privilege to achieve equality.

She addressed the problem of climate displacement, which is not covered by the 1951 Refugee Act. If the climate makes it impossible to live somewhere, people need to have the right to move. This is already a huge problem and will become much greater as temperatures rise across the planet. As you know, many people and countries are resisting migration, and there will be many more migrants in the future. How can we make them more welcome? How can we focus attention on the positive impact of migration? She noted that the Irish people need to talk that talk; there has been huge migration from Ireland, and their people have made enormous positive impacts on many countries. We need a new narrative about migration, and better management, because more migration is coming.

Her book and her talk told the stories of specific people who are most affected by climate change right now, who have become climate activists: female farmers in Africa who no longer have access to sufficient water; an African American woman who owned a beauty salon in Mississippi destroyed by Hurricane Katrina; people living in Alaska’s indigenous communities; people living in nomadic communities in Chad and Sweden; people living in and near the forests of Vietnam; and the tragic story of the people of Kiribati, a Pacific island that will cease to exist entirely if the oceans rise just a bit more. There is a story about an American woman who made significant changes in her own life that would help reduce climate change, and then was inspired to convince 1,000,000 more women to follow her lead and make similar changes. There is a story about a union official who did his best to prepare his union and his community for closure of a mine, still enduring tragic losses of all kinds. These stories are compelling and inspiring.

She talked about three steps we can all take:

1. Make the climate crisis personal in your life; do something personal to solve climate change, such as giving up meat or driving an electric car (the book Drawdown describes many options for these personal changes).

2. Get angry at those with more responsibility; get active! Put pressure on government officials; squeeze the government! Support those who are taking action. And VOTE like your lives (and the lives of your children and grandchildren) depend on it. Because they do!

3. Imagine a future that is healthy, based on relationships, with slow food and slow fashion (the book Drawdown can help you see how that is possible).

Sep 06, 2019

This book is a must read for anyone (everyone!) interested in learning more about how climate change is affecting our planet and people around the world. From the Arctic to Africa she highlights women at the grassroots level who are making a difference and bringing their voices to the world stage. She highlights how the poorest people are the ones most affected by this climate crisis and what we face as a global community in the very near future. Both frightening and hopeful Mary Robinson has delivered a gem of a book that deserves global attention.

Mar 03, 2019

This book gives hope in what seems a futile effort against climate change. Thank you to all those people who made this book and to those who continue to try to make this world a better place for the next generations of children to come, so that they may still enjoy this planet earth. Thank you.


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Jan 03, 2020

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