Thus was the caption of this picture on my friend Katherine’s Facebook page. (Katherine is the founder and CEO of Solar Sister, a social enterprise that empowers women through a market based approach to development; you can follow her on Twitter @Solar_Sister). And having just lived through the third largest storm in Chicago’s history while I watched the protests in Egypt… I just had to share.
As has been noted frequently on this blog and elsewhere (Paul Krugman’s op-ed yesterday in the NYT is a good recent example) , climate change and hunger are very much interrelated. Last year was tied for the warmest on record; this winter has been one of the wettest for the North East (it is true that one weather event is not a direct result of climate change–rather, the severe weather is in line with what scientists predict will happen as the earth grows warmer). The heavy snows are wreaking havoc on farms in Connecticut: buildings are collapsing under the weight of the snow leading to the loss of livestock. The obvious loss of food is one impact; the farmer’s loss of income and investment is another. This is to say nothing of the loss of food that continues to happen in the Global South where the climate is so unpredictable that farmers no longer know when to plant their seed.
In the U.S., there continues to be skepticism around the human role in climate change. Setting the debate aside (though I think it is a silly one–which scientists, other than the ones on the payrolls of big businesses and energy companies, really think humans are not at least partially responsible for climate change?), from my vantage point, if humans do have any control over climate change, why would we not do everything in our power to address it? If we are serious about food security for all, why not have mitigation and adaptation strategies?