The news about our warming world’s climate crisis has not been very positive as we begin another decade.

Stories of Arctic tundra and glaciers melting, sea levels rising, more severe storms and droughts, fires out of control, coral reefs collapsing, the Amazon Rainforest burning, tons of plastic in the ocean and on land, loss of plant and animal species, to name some of the them, are enough to cause anyone concerned about the degradation of our Mother Earth to stand up and take notice, as well as spur people to take action.

The nations and leaders of the world seem mostly unable to find solutions equal to the problems humanity is facing.

However, this does not mean that nothing can be done by cities, businesses, churches and families.

This column is being written as an invitation to do something as families (I consider even a one-person household a ‘family’) to help our environment, and it is also a prelude to other columns that will be published on a monthly basis about our environment, with suggestions of things a family can do to be helpful to Mother Earth and often save money.

If you are a “New Year’s resolution person,” I encourage you to make specific plans to help our earth in the new decade and beyond.

Derek Brizendine, managing editor of the Daily Star-Journal, has agreed to have these columns appear in the DSJ on a regular basis, and I have agreed to be responsible for writing the columns and for getting the articles to him to be published.

Since the latest U.N. Commission on Climate Change has recommended that we cut our greenhouse gas omissions by 50% by 2030 and that we be carbon neutral by 2050, the first column will be about the most effective ways to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions, and other topics will be explored later.

Hopefully, suggestions will be timely (like how to save heating costs during the winter and AC costs in the summer). I also hope you can discover ways of helping our environment that are fun and rewarding.

Phil Miller of Warrensburg is a member of Johnson County Citizens for Environmental Action. He can be reached at (660) 747-2996.

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