"I come from an activist family"
I come from an activist family. I have very vivid memories of protesting, signs held high and voices ringing clear in the city during the cold war; my parents were instrumental in bringing the issue of clergy abuse in the Catholic Church to the forefront; one time when I was about 9, I answered the phone and it was the secretary of the Governor General wanting to speak to my mum. As a teenager, I drove around the city delivering banners for the Drop the Debt campaign; I’ve visited detention centres, signed petitions, attended rallies, raised awareness and donated money; Mum has been peacefully and purposefully arrested a couple of times; Both Mum and Dad write letters for the Sydney Morning Herald and articles for various media. These are my role models.
All of this has prepared me for what is necessary in the face of the climate crisis. The challenges we face are enormous, but I have seen precedent for what can happen when enough people care, stand together and say enough is enough.
I am a realist though. I would push back against my mum who would insist we would all have to go back to horse and cart, or who would embarrassingly tell the restaurant that the air conditioning was too high and wasting energy. There is something to be said for small changes – we need millions of imperfect actions. However I am a big picture person, and I know that we cannot solve the crisis without some serious systemic changes. Fortunately, the changes are ready and available, but now there is push back from those who are set to lose billions in the transition.
"My children are my biggest motivator."
My children are my biggest motivator. I am passionate about them having a future. Any
mother or father would be, but in the face of the climate crisis, the passion takes on a whole new level. Suddenly their very lives are at stake.
On 25th September, the kids and I stood outside their school with a massive banner that read “Honk for Climate Action.” I worried that no one would honk their horn, but within the first 5 seconds, people were already honking. Within 25 minutes, 220 cars, trucks, buses and motorbikes had honked their horn. There is community support for climate action. Most of us understand that there is a moral imperative to do something about it, however not many people understand why. I would like to be able to help us all understand a little bit more about why we must change and how we can do it.