Lucy Edwards has put everything on hold to follow her passion as climate change crusader. She is on a mission to run 400 kilometres across 13 countries – and she wants us all to follow her journey.
Lucy has left her corporate law job in London to create and complete “The Climate Run”; a 30 day challenge to run 400km to raise awareness of the effects of climate change on everyday people across the world. Read on for Lucy’s top tips on turning your passion into a reality.
Find your ‘Why’
When you really feel passionate about something, you know why.
“If we don’t address climate change, then all the other problems in the world fall away because we won’t have an earth that is inhabitable as we know it.”
Importantly, Lucy’s ‘why’ contains hope:
“Shock statement aside, scientists believe this really IS something that we can deal with, but only if we take serious action now.”
You don’t need to drop everything for your passion
“I am probably not one of those inspiring cases of corporate lawyers who had an epiphany and promptly quit. My UK visa was up and I had enough savings to treat this as a full time job.
I hope my approach shows that following your passion need not be dramatic. Even taking a few months out can still make a difference.”
Use your crowd
“I’ve found it can be really hard to know how to start making a difference to causes that I consider important.
I’ve learnt that, as cliche as it sounds, every little bit helps. Every additional person on a march, every post or like on Facebook, every time someone shares a story or fact – it all adds up.”
Make your passion fit with what you already do
“I listened to a hard-hitting climate change podcast by the Guardian called ‘the biggest story in the world’.
A few months later I was in Ireland running along a beautiful piece of coastline, when we were forced to divert our route as part of the path had slipped away as a result of coastal erosion. I thought about how this was just a taste of what is to come.
I’m combining my passion for running in pristine environments and the Guardian’s approach to conveying the effects of climate change in a relatable way.”
Brainstorm with intention
“I did a lot of research and chose places to run in accordingly. Some effects get a lot of air time, but there are so many others that you don’t hear about as much.
Last year 100 people died in forest fires in Portugal. These fires were Portugal’s worst natural disaster in living memory, and the extent and severity of them is linked to human induced climate change.
There’s even magic in Lucy’s goal to run exactly 400 kilometres:
“400 represents 400ppm (i.e., how we measure climate change.) Scientists have confirmed that 350ppm is the upper limit of what is safe, but we have now surpassed 400ppm.”
Jump the hurdles before you get to them…
Lucy anticipated her audience might question why she is flying around the world (emitting carbons along the way).
“I have endeavoured to reduce the carbon emissions from this project by offsetting the emissions from the flights I will be taking. I hope the message spread and the stories told will outweigh the carbon cost in this instance.”
…But the biggest hurdle is finding a way to start small
“It is easy to get overwhelmed at the enormity of today’s issues.
However, if you choose a particular aspect or angle to take, something that you are passionate about, then tackling a particular issue can suddenly appear much more manageable.”
Know what you want to achieve
“Success would be someone saying “I read your blog on flooding in New York, I had no idea the effects could be that severe” or “I work for Christchurch City Council and think it needs to get behind the Zero Carbon Act, so I have sent an email around rallying support”.
Success would also be our government passing a strong, progressive and forceful Zero Carbon Act for New Zealand.”
Follow Lucy’s journey
You can’t always wait for inspiration. Sometimes, you have to hunt it down. You can start right here:
Website: contains blogs on how each place Lucy visits is affected by climate change www.theclimaterun.com
Givealittle: donate to climate mitigation and adaptation in the Pacific here.