The small but idyllic Catalina Island is turning green. Catalina is a small island off the southern coast of California. It has a population of around 3500 mostly conservative and affluent citizens. Not exactly stereotypical green activists, but the people of Catalina are embracing change to help reduce their impact on global warming. Their aim is to reduce their carbon emissions to as near zero as possible and be as self-sustaining as possible.
The reason? One film by Al Gore, you know the one, “An Inconvenient Truth” and the fact that their island paradise will very likely be underwater if global warming continues at its present rate.
Fear is driving their desire for change. It is fear that is creating the impetus for real change. The good people of Catalina are looking at their lifestyles and making changes to help themselves, both as individuals and as a society. They hope to be an example of model living that will influence others across the USA. The fact that it is helping the planet may initially have been of little interest to them, but does it really matter? The end result is the same: they are causing less damage to the planet.
So perhaps what some people need to drive positive change is fear. Rather than appealing to people’s sense of duty or concern for the environment, we should be making them afraid of the consequences to them. A good dose of fear may save the planet where common sense has failed.