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  • Writer's pictureKrista Kurth, Ph.D.

Focus Your Climate Action to Fit Your Life

Updated: Sep 10, 2020

One of the key drivers of what we do in our daily lives is how many resources we have to contribute to any cause. We all have many competing priorities that pull at our time and pocketbooks.

In my last blog post I helped you identify the level of contribution you can make. In this post I explore how you can pair your resource and contribution levels to determine the focus of your climate action.

How much time, energy, and money do you have to dedicate to addressing the climate crisis?

When we marry the level of resources we have with the amount of contribution we want to make, we can identify which climate actions are the best fit for us. The following Climate Action Grid outlines the six categories that result from pairing these two scales.

Note: The contribution scale is cumulative: chickens will also focus on climate action at home, and pigs will also focus on climate action in the community and home.

Section One: Nest Tender

The Nest Tender prefers to focus his contributions on the home front. Since he has less time, energy and/or money to use, he concentrates on making what he already does more climate friendly.

For instance, he can add more meatless meals into the weekly menu, buy wind or solar energy through an alternative energy producer linked to his local utility, recycle and buy items made from recycled materials, and put in LED bulbs.

Section Two: Nest Builder

The Nest Builder also prefers to focus on the home front, but since she has more resources to spend, she can create a nest with more climate friendly features. She can insulate her house, install energy saving appliances, lease solar panels, drive a hybrid or electric vehicle, buy wind energy credits to offset her carbon footprint, and canvas for environmentally savvy political candidates.

Section Three: Free-Range Chicken

Free-Range Chickens are interested in community action and taking action at home. They make the same changes in their daily lives as the Nest Tenders but add in some low resource community action. They sign petitions to ask local governments and companies to implement green solutions, make small donations to climate action groups, and buy food from local farmers.

Section Four: Ruler of the Roost

Rulers of the Roost have more resources (time and money), so besides doing much of what the previous sectors do, they are more active in their communities. They play an organizing role in the climate groups in their region, lobby local and state governments to pass climate solution legislation, and make larger donations to climate action groups.

Section Five: Piglet

A Piglet is so committed to climate action, he does whatever he can within his means to support systemic climate solutions. He takes action at home, in his community, and at the national and global level.

He is likely to take a position with a climate focused organization so he can spend most of his day working on solutions, or lobbying Congress to pass legislation like then New Green Deal.

Section Six: Whole Hog

As the label suggests, this climate animal goes all out in devoting her life to working on the climate issue.

She does everything she can as an individual, community member, and global citizen to address the climate crisis. She speaks out, often stands on the front lines at rallies and protests where she will risk being arrested, and she gives as much money as she can to solving the situation.

In which sector do you see yourself right now? Can you imagine yourself taking broader action on climate and moving into another sector?

In future posts, I’ll provide a more comprehensive list of actions for each of these six categories. However, I want to first outline a way for you to sort through all the climate actions you could take. Keep an eye out for the next few blogs to find out which major category of solutions most appeals to you.



I’d love to know what’s grabbing your attention or what questions are running through your mind. Let me know in the comments section.

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