There is no wealth but life
by Satish Kumar
Cover: Windswept live oak and rising full moon Photograph: Diane Miller/Monsoon Image
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A winter walk Photograph: Maurice Van Der Velden/Istock
GREEN SUNDAY A response to the climate change crisis.
SIR NICHOLAS STERN has written a lengthy report for the British Government outlining the urgent action needed in response to the imminent climate crisis. Most of his solutions to global warming are technological, based on finding alternative, non- fossil-fuel sources of energy. They are all commendable, but it will be some time before we can implement these solutions.
In the meantime, we can do something immediately: we can declare Sunday to be a fossil- fuel-free day or at least an energy-saving day. We can start this week, this month or this year. We can start individually and collectively.
Not long ago Sunday used to be a day of rest, a day of spiritual renewal, a day for families to come together, but we have changed Sunday from a day of rest to a day of shopping, flying and driving. However, in the context of excessive carbon emissions into the atmosphere, which are bringing catastrophic upheavals, we can and should restore Sunday to a day for Gaia, the Earth. There will be no great hardship in cutting down all non-essential and non-urgent use of fossil fuels for one day a week. We can easily close supermarkets, department stores and petrol stations, stop deliveries and reduce mobility to the bare essentials. We can enjoy Sunday once more with our family and friends, or by gardening, writing, painting, walking or simply spending time in contemplation. This will be good for our personal health as well as for the health of the planet. At a stroke, we can reduce by one seventh our carbon emissions into the atmosphere.