Is Individual Action to Fight Climate Change a Distraction? Yes!

Updated: May 22, 2020


Harry and Bob debate whether individual action to fight climate change is a distraction. is a website that provides a full spectrum of thousands of ideas to fight climate change and protect the environment with a generational blog to talk about it. Ideas range from putting an environmental sticker on your car bumper and placing a brick in your toilet tank to displace and conserve water, to joining an environmental action group and organizing to reverse the U.S. Paris Climate Accord withdrawal.

But which of these many ideas are deserving of your time and effort? Which are effective in reducing green house gas emissions and making living on our planet more tolerable? Which will promote the avoidance of unmitigated climate disasters in the future?

Yes, we must all do our best individually, but we can only arrive at solutions to climate change collectively. We must seriously re-evaluate our place in the world. Unless we change direction to work more cooperatively, the little things we can do all by ourselves are just a distraction.

While individually reducing our carbon footprints may be moral and virtuous it deflects attention from governments capable of compelling offending industries to change their polluting ways.

Climate Action Must Rise to the Level of Meeting Our Goals

Photo: Saph Photography from

Many would challenge my assertion that individual environmental action is just a distraction. But it is my contention that to achieve big goals such as limiting fossil fuel emissions’ global warming impacts to an increase of less than 1.5 degrees centigrade above pre-industrial levels (as the IPCC- Inter-Governmental Panel on Climate Change Special Report of 2018 suggests) requires large-scale collective action that transcends national and political boundaries way beyond aggregate individual actions.

I would even go further to say it requires social conflict, economic disruption and civil disobedience.

Reflect for a moment on the major social changes in this country over the