Frequently Asked Questions
What is Environmental Sustainability ?
No single blueprint of environmental sustainability exists, as economies, social systems, cultures and ecological conditions differ widely among countries and from person to person.
However, within a range of available definitions everyone can find a framework to work towards improving the environmental sustainability of our world.
Why Should You Set-up an Environmental Committee in your Rotary District or Rotary Club ?
The environment surrounds us in our world. It affects everything we do and the projects we undertake. The Environment is changing and there is much that we can do to reduce our impact and to improve our world, in our backyard and across the world. With ‘The Environment’ becoming an area of focus for Rotary we should get together and see what we can do.
How to set up an Environmental Committee ?
Why Climate Change is Rotary Business ?
Rotarians understand that the whole world is their backyard, they can see change occurring, and want to participate in lessening the effects of the change. This April 2019 article published in The Rotarian, before Rotary International declared a seventh area of focus on The Environment, is worth reading. It includes discussion with then Rotary International President Barry Rassin and covers “Let’s Start the Conversation”; “Losing Ground”; “Friendly Persuasion – the Rotary Way” and “Ground Game – the things Rotarians are doing … be part of the solution”
Isn't Climate Change really a political issue ?
The temperature of the earth, sea and atmosphere is rising, and many scientists project this will continue unless greenhouse gasses (in particular carbon dioxide and methane) are reduced. Associated with increasing temperature are predicted sea level rise, storm activities and bushfires. Changing human activities that generate greenhouse gases is recommended to reduce temperature rises; and most countries have signed the Paris Accord to this effect.
However, changing the way our society has provided power; transported goods; manufactured products; or grown food; etc., is difficult and quite challenging. To be effective, change is required by governments, business and individuals. Unfortunately, in the cut and thrust of politics there has been disagreement about what should be done and how quickly changes should or could be made. The acrimony of the debate has resulted in people asking:
Isn’t Climate Change really a political issue ?
For Rotary with its new area of focus: Supporting the Environment; climate change is only one area deserving our attention. Rotarians understand that the whole world is their backyard. They can see the effects of climate change in communities they care about, and they shouldn’t wait to act. However, there may be members of your Club who believe Climate Change policy is politically driven and resist environmental activities within your club.
Their opposition to climate change urgency should not stop your club tackling other environmental problems. These could be local, in a wider region, or overseas. They could be small or large. Start with a small project such as Colour your World, picking up plastic waste, reducing food waste, collect for DIK – there are lots of ideas on the ANZPI site. Many activities like reducing food waste, providing solar energy to schools in developing nations and planting trees to promote healthy soils have the co-benefits of reversing global warming. So solutions to Climate Change don’t all involve action from Governments and are things clubs and individuals can do to improve the wellbeing of their local community and the wider world.
Find a project to Support the Environment that your club members can do. Tackle the problem the way you always do: come up with beneficial projects, use your skills and connections to effect change, and plan future activities. Most importantly get started.
What is the importance of “Wildlife Corridors” ?
Isolating plants and animals in small pockets dramatically increase their chance of becoming locally extinct. Wildlife biodiversity corridors reconnect isolated remnant and revegetated ecosystems. This allows animals, birds and insects to move through the tree canopy, among bushes or along the ground where there is adequate ground cover. Linking remnant ecosystems across farms and suburbs and using road verges, rivers and creeks can act as natural corridors for our native plants and animals. This could be a project for your Rotary Club. There is lots of available information.