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A Growing Wave

A call for climate policy solutions that begin with YOU.

Cartoon by David Horsey via Flickr

A new report shows that mental health should factor into #COP26 negotiations and policy action at every level - from the home to communities to national & international action. Mental Health and Our Changing Climate, released today by the American Psychological Association & ecoAmerica, features the effects of climate change on mental health, the inequitable impacts, and how policymakers can respond.

The report notes, "Over three quarters of Americans report that they are concerned about climate change, and those who are most “Alarmed” (about 25% of the United States population) nearly doubled from 2017 to 2021. This concern, however, has not yet translated into needed personal and political action for solutions."

The report outlines the recommended steps individuals can take toward a greener, more equitable future with mental health in mind.

  1. Build personal resilience

  2. Build community resilience

  3. Take action at home and in the community

  4. Achieve meaningful climate solutions through local and national decision makers

The report goes on to highlight climate attitudes that can inspire action:

  • Climate Action is Personal

  • Visible Leadership & Personal Experience Build Action

  • Health is a Priority

  • People are Making the Health-Climate Connection

  • Concern about Health Diminishes Partisanship

  • Health Professionals are Trusted & Can Lead

But most importantly, the report details the mental health impacts of the climate crisis. Notably: loss of personal identity. Identity of place (where we live), occupation (how we contribute), and culture are all at risk in the climate crisis. Loss of identity is the root of the mental health impacts of the climate crisis.

This gap between the realization of concern and the moment of action is why OneGreenThing exists. We are here to help you see & celebrate your identity as a way to tackle the overwhelm of the climate crisis personally & create culture change that will ultimately drive policy change.

At OneGreenThing, we ask you to begin with the Service Superpower Assessment. With our assessment, you learn your unique talents in service - to yourself & the world. From there, you can begin the practice of daily habits in sustainability, what we call a #OneGreenThing.

The report and OneGreenThing make clear that success depends on big policy solutions. These daily habits are not the solutions itself. But they are the beginning of a change - a building wave of culture change - that will guide citizens to set expectations of leaders and demand policies that save our sanity & the planet.

Some #OneGreenThings to consider by Service Superpower:

  • Adventurers: Make a plan to put the mental health & overall health of your family at the center of your next trip. Consider the ways you can take action, joyfully & together.

  • Influencers: Share the report on social media & ask your friends to call a local or national leader to demand a public statement on their climate action plan.

  • Philanthropists: Consider a year-end gift to OneGreenThing to help us build programs and guides that will build the movement of joy through climate action.

  • Sages: Reflect on the power of identity as individuals & as a global community. Consider how a celebration of individual identity could spark joy & healing globally.

  • Sparks: Help us spread the word about the importance of eco-anxiety in the climate action conversation. Inspire someone to take the Service Superpower Assessment.

  • Wonks: Read the report from cover to cover. Help others understand the data & calls to actions included.


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