People are gathering around the world on September 20th to go on strike to demand something be done about the climate crisis. This movement was started by school children in Sweden and now they are asking for help from people of all ages and in all countries. We owe it to their generation, we owe it to our own generation, we owe it to all future generations, and we also owe it to past generations. 200,000 years of human progress and we would let it go because we like the taste of a burger a lot. What did they fight for. What did they struggle to survive for. What did they innovate for. We should not take the existence of humanity for granted. If anyone has ever lost a parent think about that. They lived and died so you can exist. And what will you do with your existence? Will you make the sacrifices that they’ve all made worth while? Because you don’t have to? You know marketers who want you to consume need you to carry on like normal so they can get your resources. Please find the strength to put your life on hold for just 1 week to pitch in on letting the world know this is a crisis and we have to do something.

Here are some ideas about what that might look like.

– If you own a shop you can put a sign up that says, “closed for the climate crisis, please join us on climate strike at X address.”

-If you own a blog, podcast or youtube channel you can announce your normal content will be on hold and you’ll instead be reporting from your local climate strike.

-If you answer to a boss, you can let them know you are on strike, give them warning. Let them plan for it. Invite them to join you. Invite them to let customers know that business services are on hold for 1 week while humanity regroups to determine what to do about the climate crisis.

-If you work in a hospital, ok, you might not be joining the strike, but you can still go own strike with a shirt you where that week, or a button or from what you say to each person. “I’d be physically on strike if it wasn’t for everyone needing me here, but I do want you to know that I’m conceptually on board and I’m trying to figure out what our hospital can do to lower our carbon footprint.”

-If you are a pilot or driver. Wow, I know you work really hard. You might just want to stay at home and sleep for 7 days to let your body recoup from the exhaustion. But as much as you can you can also join physically at a strike location that would be really supportive. And let your bosses know it’s a chance to tell the customers that the pilots and drivers are on strike right now because of the climate crisis. That will impact hundreds of peoples lives. You are in a position to massively amplify the message. You know we can’t see CO2, so you have to make them feel it.

If you are a teacher of any age students, they will all be more likely to strike if the teachers are on strike.

If you are a parent, bring your kids out for the 1 week strike. How could you not? It’s their future. And this moment will be remembered in history. There will be the parents who brought their kids out to the strike as they themselves also went on strike and the ones who didn’t. Which do you want to be?

If you work in the food industry this is tricky, we don’t want people to starve but people probably won’t starve. I’d say go on strike. Just put up signs and if you are feeling generous bring food to the strikes. You can take donations for the food with a recommended donation that helps you cover the cost. Then put a sign up at your grocery store or restaurant explaining you are closed to customers but are giving food to strikers. You will touch so many peoples lives who didn’t otherwise even know the climate crisis was a real thing.

If you are in a Union, talk to your union manager. The safety conditions of your job are at steak if your company doesn’t do something to fix the climate to the extent that they can. And they can. Everyone can go carbon neutral. Through offsetting. The manager can even come up with a list of demands that the strikers are asking for. One recommendation is to go carbon neutral by the end of 2020. Offset services exist that plant trees but also you can hire an electrical engineer to figure out how to save electricity or add renewable to your business. If your company is not a carbon neutral company then you have permission to go on strike. You can’t be fired. Your union will protect you and your rights to a safe atmosphere.

What else should we be asking for. It’s up to everyone to decide. I believe we should have a carbon receipt on every purchase and we should stop all fossil fuel subsidies to start to experience the true cost of fossil fuels and then all of that money saved should be divided up and given as an award to each company and individual who can show that at the end of 2020 they had an entire year with no carbon footprint. And as soon as possible we mandate that all transactions must include on the bill of sale the carbon footprint of the goods or services being exchanged. This way someone can make a choice that is informed. Otherwise we can’t lower emissions if we just are blind to those emissions. And I don’t like the word “tax” so I personally wouldn’t use it. Just receipts and end of year rewards and lifting subsidies for fossil fuels. We could also increase subsidies for renewable if there is extra money but we really don’t need to because it’s already the cheapest method. But we probably should outlaw the creation of coal plants or plants that turn fossil fuels into energy. I mean we should outlaw the manufacturing of any fossil fuel burning product. By the end of 2020. Really. I mean let’s think about it. We probably should do that.

There is an existing fleet that will remain operational. It would be theft to take that away from businesses without warning however I think in about 10 years we should just flat out ban the burning of fossil fuels world wide. I mean we have to really. And by then we can definitely use the market pressure of seeing the true cost of oil to further reward entrepreneurs who can create the solutions for clean air travel, clean sea travel, clean energy production, clean transportation, clean food production and clean manufacturing. That pretty much cleans most things up. There are solutions in various stages of development to make every single one of those industries carbon neutral. Can we deploy them all immediately? I don’t know but it’s not like we had the tanks and guns and uniforms we needed when we realized Hitler was trying to take over the world. This should be like that moment, we realize there is an existential threat and we mobilize. Immediately. Not like, “ehhh, maybe one day we should get around to that, if it’s cost effective enough.” No, we need to jump on it now. And make some serious compromises and sacrifices to show everyone our commitment.

If we then keep planting trees and further refine sequestration technology we can actually return the climate to pre-industrial levels. We probably can’t get back the thousands of species that already went extinct but we can save the ones that still exist. Including our own species. If nothing else everyone should be on board with that concept. Let’s not go extinct. We do owe that to our ancestors for their sacrifices and to the prosperity and safety of future generations. I’ll see you on September 20th.