The evolution of my personal value system over the past few years has evolved grounded in an awakening to our ecological footprint. We must move towards a lifestyle with a bit more voluntary discomfort. To realize how privileged we are and how entitled to our conveniences and comforts we act.

Spending time falling in love with the wild places we must protect

Your Convenient Life has a Massive Ecological Footprint

This means we need to look at drastically reducing our personal consumption and putting the protection of our wild natural places as paramount. It also means looking at what we eat, where we live, what does our work look like and how we spend our free time.

For me this means that our environment comes first at all costs. Our wild places need to remain wild and we need to look at reclaiming much of the rest. I’m not going to harp on about climate change but rather the massive destructive footprint that extraction and industrialization has caused. We may have not know 50 or 100 years ago but we sure as hell know what damage is being done now. We know better and must do better.

Explore Your Countries Footprint

Global Footprint Network has done an incredible job of compiling data from around the word to look at our ecological Footprint. The economic vitality of nations depends on increasingly scarce ecological assets. Their interactive map shows which countries are running an ecological deficit (red) or have an ecological reserve (green). Explore your country by clicking on this link; Ecological Deficit and Reserve Interactive Map

ecological footprint biological capacity Canada
In Canada we have been slowing wiping out our biological capacity

From our impact on the environment then we look at our footprint as humans in society. The trend in North America populations show people constantly going through cycles of hedonic adaptation. This is where our houses keep getting bigger so we can have McMansions. We sprawl out massive cities for these big houses and so we can build roads to drive our gas guzzling 7 passenger SUVs. We eat too much from mass produced corporate food systems including far too much meat and then waste even more of that food.

We have a single use product mindset, quick food, quick treats, plenty of plastic and disposable lives. Communities that scream as NIMBYs against tiny homes, van life dwellers and anyone who dares live an unconventional lifestyle. A society where we yell with road rage at cyclist. A society where we judge home owners on how green their their lawns are leading to damaging fertilizers, pesticides and water waste.

Its ok to change people, you will be fine like generations before us. Think about how how communities faced the odds of the great depression or the dust bowl years. They had nothing but we can’t do without 4 bedrooms and AC blasting?

Let us stop making decisions about the environment that are decided on how will this inconvenience me and how much will it cost. You know what, it will cost lives down the road and our future generations will pay that price.

Be open to change, embrace some discomfort in your life, reduce your footprint and while you are at it choose businesses that align with that same value. While the political systems struggle and battle to change, we the people can be the ones that make it happen while they squabble over it.

Climate Strike 2019 and Ecological Awareness is Rising

If we all collectively embrace the future, then industry, corporations and the government have no choice than to change. Thank you to all that participated in #FridaysForFuture and the #GlobalStrikeForFuture in September of 2019. This #ClimateStrike was the largest environmental awareness campaign the world has ever seen.

Believe in our future needing a change or maybe you don’t, either way you need to listen to what the youth are demanding for the future. Change for them, the wild spaces and the wildlife of our world who don’t have a voice.

Here are a few more articles you might enjoy that I have written on our ecological footprint and my thoughts and lifestyle changes.

Have you thought about your personal ecological footprint and if so what changes have you taken?

Have you pressured your local or national government to bring change?

Comment below as I would love to hear from you.

Alpine lakes & old growth forests are just a few places we need to keep intact

Connect Further at Mindful Explorer

Be sure to join along on my mindful journey discovering the benefits of the outdoors, environmental awareness, eco-tourism, sustainable lifestyle and mindfulness on social media. My Instagram account is @Stasher_BC as on Twitter at @Stasher_BC .

Use the hashtags #MindfulExplorer and #ExploreBeyondTheUsual so I can see how you are leading a mindful life and enjoying the outdoors.

Join the discussion 7 Comments

  • financialfitnessfanatic says:

    Thank you for this much needed post, Chris. We’ve been trying to enhance our conscientiousness surrounding these issues lately, but it is always a work in progress. Our main focuses have been driving less, walking more, and producing less waste, especially around food. But I know it’s not enough. I am often guilty of fearing the extra expenses sometimes associated with more environmentally-conscious choices, but I am fully aware of this and working towards change! The US is looking abysmal in terms of biocapacity, but sadly, this does not surprise me.

  • I do the best I can Chris. I ride my bike everywhere, sometimes I don’t even use my car for weeks. But when I need to take my Mom to the doctors I have to drive, she lives an hour and a half drive away.

    As you know I’ve blogged about many of these issues, including the bloated houses and SUVs in North America. Unfortunately I don’t see an answer. Americans are clearly hypocrites on this issue – they basically virtue signal by saying they care and then they behave in ways that show they don’t. An then of course there’s China and India. They will continue to march toward more development, more cars, and a bigger ecological footprint. And they have more than 2.6 billion people.

    • Some days I do great and then the next I’ll screw up, breaking down 40 years plus of habits is hard but is the single most important thing I can do now for my future and that of others. I am fortunate to follow others like you Dave who try to share the same message and help me stay true to the path. The world is a crazy place right now and the negative affects of capitalism running its course on the planet is horrible. I have great hope that we can swing back to the positive in this system and it will do good by us all but first will take the personal, regional and national will to do so. Otherwise nothing will change and the only thing that will matter is money.

  • I have loved the recent loudness that’s come with climate strikes and #fridaysforfuture. I’m cautiously optimistic that maybe, just maybe, this will be enough this time to turn the tide.

    But probably not.

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