Probably the biggest factor contributing to global warming is the burning of fossil fuels. 80% of the energy we use worldwide is created by the burning of fossil fuels. This produces CO2 gases in huge amounts, trapping heat in the atmosphere and leading to the ‘greenhouse effect’.
The rainforests are vital; tree roots store water, breathing life into the land, and they act as ‘sponges’, storing carbon and removing it from the air. The Amazon in particular is essential for the health of the planet; but it’s being lost at an alarming rate. One cause is the expansion of agriculture: growing soybeans or grains to feed cattle. In turn, cattle and sheep produce methane, another harmful greenhouse gas.
It is predicted that within the next 10 years, global warming will push 120 million more people into poverty, and if temperatures are not kept in check, result in the biggest migrations in human history, reversing all the progress the Fair Trade movement has achieved in the last 50 years!
We also face the prospect of a new mass extinction of wildlife not seen in millions of years. Animals are not just cute and lovable, with some like tigers and elephants needing protection; they’re an integral part of our planet. Predators keep herbivores in check; bees pollinate plants; birds disperse seeds. In the oceans, plankton and corals are threatened by the acidification caused by rising temperatures; fish suffer; we eat fish. A threat to any part of the food chain is ultimately a threat to us.
What can we do?
We still have time to prevent this catastrophe – but we need to act now!
As businesses, we can play a huge part in this. Demand for products which will help slow global warming is increasing rapidly, in fact ironically, it seems that as soon as we drop the business mantra ‘growth, growth, growth’, our sales start to rise! What type of products are we selling? Are raw materials sustainable? Are fossil fuels a significant factor in production, packaging and transportation?
Our mission at Shared Earth is to tackle the climate crisis and create a fairer, more sustainable world. Recycled and sustainable products are the basis of our website.
We are also tackling one of the most difficult issues of all for an importer. From January 2021, we will be the first UK business in the gift, fashion and homeware sectors to say that the shipping of all our products, from the producer to you as customer, will be carbon-neutral, resulting in CO2 emissions of ZERO.
This will be an added selling point for you as a retailer; you’ll be able to offer your customers genuine carbon-free products, and you’ll be showing them, by buying our products, that you too are concerned about climate change and are doing something about it.