Anne Franklin / Analyst

European Commission / Environment, biodiversity

The translation of this testimony was generated automatically by a translation program. Thanks for your understanding.

I was bord as a city girl and nearly always lived a city life. Yet I chose studies and holidays that enabled me to roam outside whenever that was possible. Those moments clearly figure in the list of my best memories! I just love nature and rural life. Watching – and listening to – bees and other insects foraging meadow flowers is one of my favourite summer activities. That is why I am deeply concerned by the global changes the natural environment is facing: loss of biodiversity, land degradation, overexploitation of natural resources and climate change.
Clearly, being concerned is not enough. Action is needed. My personal contribution is to change my own habits. I try to do it one small step at a time. Buying less stuff! This is hard. Less books, less clothes, less food, less useless items. Using less stuff! Limiting food waste, limiting energy use, limiting water use. I still love taking long showers. I need to improve on that. Switching to more sustainable habits. Using public transport instead of the car, not taking the plane so often, buying local produce. Get involved in awareness raising activities. Together with my family, I help maintain my kids school’s kitchen garden and I organise once a year nature activities at their school.
Changing habits is not easy to achieve, in our comfortable, well-to-do society. We do not always have the choice to turn to more sustainable solutions. It can also be difficult to know whether our choices are the right ones. For example, how can we know that the organic food and clothes we are buying come from truly nature-friendly sources? 
 
Change will come via a combination of factors. Innovation is essential to design new products, invent new methods and generate new habits. Courageous political decisions need to be taken, even though they will seem revolutionary to many. Societal changes can be happen bottom-up. The student climate marches in several European countries are a beautiful example. They should be encouraged, and most importantly, acted upon.

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