Why should I care about the climate when there are bigger problems in my country?

Because of humans. Three years ago I fled my home country Syria escaping the armed conflict that is still the reality of many. When discussing climate change I am often confronted by people from similar backgrounds admitting that they cannot act on climate change or even care about at the moment. Poverty, hunger, war, racial discrimination, and many other issues are the daily life of many at home, so why should I care about green energy and pollution?

The truth is climate change is a bigger issue than we imagine. It is not only air pollution and organic food. In many countries around the world, people have very similar suffering experiences because of climate change. Many parts of the world are suffering from droughts subjecting them to hunger seasons. Climate change can even be an indirect cause of armed conflict! By subjecting many to droughts thus hunger and poverty, climate change can contribute to “war friendly” situation. Of course I am not trying to say that by solving climate change we can stop all problems, but it is definitely a step forward.

Now the biggest issue: Natural Disasters. Let’s not forget the climate change is the main reason behind the rising numbers of natural disasters in the recent years from floods to typhoons to many others. I look at my experience in the war in Syria and then I look the experience of my friend Daniel in the Philippines. Although the cause of my experience was war while his was typhoons, I find many similarities. We both had to move houses a lot, and much like war typhoons also cause poverty.

This is only one part of the picture, climate change causes much more problems. We can write many more pages, but I wanted to be brief. With all these problems people are suffering from around the world, we cannot ignore climate change and having similar problems in our own countries should not stop us, but should be a motivation. Knowing the experiences of people in hard situations should push us to help others in similar situations regardless of the reasons, why? Because of humans.



3 Comments Add yours

  1. K says:

    Yes, but imagine a world where we have the ideal solution to climate change, and all those measures which we consider essential to ensuring a sustainable future for our planet are implemented. This world would still very likely have inequality, poverty and hunger due to reasons other than climate change. These battles cannot be separate from one another. Can we imagine an end to poverty (and debt and slavery) in the same way we imagine and work towards sustainable policies, technologies and practices?


    1. Zawer says:

      In no way I argue that we should not work to solve inequalities or that climate change is the main reason “Of course I am not trying to say that by solving climate change we can stop all problems”, however I am trying to highlight the importance of this topic given the disasters it causes. The UN highlights poverty as the first in their sustainable development goals and it has been decreasing. The issue with slavery is that most of it is not recognized as slavery, however a sustainable small community lifestyle would possibly help limit those problems.


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