Corona and climate - interview by VPRO
After months of making sense of the state of our world, Dutch broadcaster VPRO asked us what we think of climate change and the current pandemic. You can watch the full interview (in Dutch) under this link. During our hours of conversation with interviewer Soraya, we spoke about many interconnected challenges.
From historical injustices, to our habit of extraction and exploitation, everything that is wrong (and maybe everything that is right, too?) is magnified by this pandemic. In the same way that we see a form of 'climate apartheid' exist where some are hit harder by climate change than others, we are starting to see the contours of 'corona apartheid' too. In which the burden falls hard on vulnerable communities, and in which the solutions cannot be accessed by all. While many of us have been doing the right thing (sitting in our homes), others simply have no homes, no water to wash hands, and no food to soothe their hunger.
We were able to express the importance of collaboration (call us!), the need to work from strong values and the imperative to honor all that has been in order to confidently move into the Great Unknown.
And there is so much left to talk about. We are thinking about the billions of invisible people working to keep our economies running, our capricious consumption satisfied in exchange for their basic survival. What has happened to all these people? The farmers, the people behind the sewing machines, the market porters? How do they experience all that is lost due to climate change? How do they experience a lack of income during this pandemic? What else is lost? How do we take stock and design our next steps, to move towards a more sustainable, inclusive and compassionate future for all?
If we are to build a better tomorrow, we need a wholesome approach. We need to pay attention to the stories we tell ourselves about who we want to be. Approach the task ahead of us with as much compassion, joy and sensitivity as we can muster. In an interconnected world, there are rarely simple answers. We would do well to listen closely, tread lightly, and keep learning from our mistakes.
P.S. Pakhuis de Zwijger is hosting an online meetup to speak about the topic (in Dutch). Lynn will be on the panel too.