Do you remember Alfred E Neuman?

True satisfaction comes from achieving tasks that have demanded our best.

Well, there are plenty of worthy challenges in today’s world, here is a selection.

  1. Global warming
  2. Food waste
  3. Biodiversity loss
  4. Poor Governance
  5. Plastic Pollution
  6. Deforestation
  7. Air Pollution
  8. Rising Seas Levels
  9. Ocean Acidification
  10. Soil Health
  11. Overpopulation
  12. Food production

Because these issues are complex, interrelated, and difficult to monitor it is difficult to provide irrefutable evidence of progress. Against this background stakeholders lose interest, become apathetic and innovation loses momentum.

Some people might remember the fictional Alfred E Neuman character from “Mad” magazine with the motto “What, me worry?”.

Is Alfred stereotypical of our approach today?

Silver bullet

Is there a simple and seemingly magical solution to these challenges?

Listing to the TV this morning a delegate at the New York Climate week was asked what the most exciting thing was that she had heard. She said it was discussion around “Nature Based Solutions”.

I would agree, let me explain.

Nature Based Solutions

The environment is the one thing we all share. It is not about a few committed souls being perfect. The answer is that we all need to make changes to reduce our impact on our planet and then leave a positive legacy for future generations.

The best missions are those with simple defined targets.  We all must ask not what is best for us, but what is best for the planet. I believe that nature-based solutions if resourced correctly will address many of the issues above.

Here are some of my nature-based solutions. They need momentum, but critically all these actions are things that we can all do and can start today.

Don’t be like Alfred.

  1. Reduce food waste.
  2. Buy less, make more (and make do more).
  3. Drive less. Fly less, walk and bike.
  4. Refuse, reduce, reuse, repair, recycle and upcycle.
  5. Eat local, seasonal food.
  6. Make compost.
  7. Plant more trees.
  8. If you eat meat and dairy, make it local.
  9. Make best use of your utilities.