Climate Change Tourist

This is just a fun video I made about my friends and our trip to Paris, but I thought it would be worth explaining how that trip came to be.

Back in October of 2015 I was feeling paralyzed with anxiety about climate change. I started putting more time aside every day to talk about environmental issues with friends and write letters or comments online. Everyone close to me knows that this has taken center stage in my life this year.

One day last summer I was reading Jeremy Leggett’s amazing book “Winning The Carbon War,” which chronicles his participation in major climate negotiations in recent years, among other significant developments in the effort to decarbonize our world economy. There was one passage in particular where he describes young activists present at one of the talks, and suddenly I was overcome with an urge to be among these people. I put the book down and bought a ticket to Paris for the COP21 climate summit.

Admittedly, buying a plane ticket was a hypocritical move on my part. Unnecessary plane rides are the opposite of limiting my carbon footprint. I did buy carbon offsets for my ticket, which Delta makes very easy, but still it’s a carbon intensive luxury that can’t be dismissed lightly. I follow developments with electric airplanes and I hope that one day soon I can fly in a commercial flight powered by nothing but sunlight. Until then I know that I’m harming the planet every time I fly, and there’s no way around that except to fly less.

Dan Bree and Jessica Makinson are two of my dearest friends. Knowing that they share my concern for the planet, I urged them both to come with me and they did. This video is more about them than the climate summit. It’s just a little vacation video I made to capture the memories.