Hailing from Ireland, a country she once led as its President, it is perhaps little surprise that Mary Robinson is a natural at telling stories. In her book, Climate Justice, the former United Nations Commissioner for Human Rights brings the humanity of Harper Lee to pages addressing one of the most important chapters in the history of civilisation: now. Climate Justice puts people at the heart of the unfolding climate crisis story, with Mary connecting us with ‘climate change witnesses’, those currently experiencing the horrendous realities that are stemming from rising emissions, and reveals the unbelievable strength these very same individuals are showing, against incredible odds, in leading the fight back, both locally and globally. If you have read nothing about climate change, read this book; if you have read a lot about climate change, read this book. It is an afternoon read that will connect you with the suffering, and the endless resilience, of those at the heart of the climate crisis, while also reminding you of the collective responsibilities we all must live up to if we wish to secure a desirable future for people and planet.
The Future We Choose
Mark Ruffalo says the time to read The Future We Choose is now. He is right, it should be required reading for all of us. We are all stewards of this great planet after all, which brings huge responsibilities and opportunities. As it stands, our collective dereliction of duty has left the world on the brink of ecosystem collapse, meaning our very survival is in jeopardy. In The Future We Choose, Christiana Figueres, the UN Secretary for Climate Change between 2010 and 2016; and Tom Rivett-Carnac, the senior political strategist for the Paris Agreement, show us where current behaviours are taking us; explain the mindsets we need to change those behaviours; and crucially, pinpoint the doing what is necessary actions that will take us on a different path: towards a future where people thrive in synergy with nature, and each other. The authors remind us in the book that: Impossible is not a fact. It is an attitude. These words really mean something from two people with an ability to achieve the seemingly impossible. The historic Paris Agreement of 2015, when 195 countries came together and agreed to work on emissions reductions that would ‘guide their economies for the next four decades’, would have sounded like the stuff of fiction to those who attended the same conference six years earlier in Copenhagen, when it appeared all hope was lost that countries would ever find common ground on taking effective climate action. The impossible became possible because of the actions of Christiana and Tom. In The Future We Choose, we learn that same power to do the seemingly impossible is within all of us.