Quantcast

The Story of Change

Climate

Annie Leonard

Our new movie—The Story of Change—has just been released.

We made The Story of Change to inspire our viewers, community members and others to step out of the consumer mindset and into our full power as citizens to build a better future.

That's because too often, when faced with daunting environmental and social problems (say, disruption of the global climate) many of us instinctively flex our power in the only way we know how—as consumers.

Plastic garbage choking the oceans? Carry our own shopping bag.

Formaldehyde in baby shampoo? Buy the brand with the green seal.

Warming planet? Change our lightbulbs.

Without a doubt, those are all good things to do. But the fact is, better shopping isn't going to change the world.

If we really want to build a better future, we have to move beyond voting with our dollars and come together to demand rules that work.

That's the lesson we learned when we looked back at a series of effective movements for change, from the U.S. civil rights movement to the environmental victories of the 1970s. They didn't just pester people to perfect their daily choices; they said we will work together until the problem is solved.

That's not simple, and it won't be easy. We'll have to aim high and act boldly.

But we're convinced that history is on our side. So let's get to work and make the kind of change we know is possible.

Along with the movie we've launched the Changemaker Quiz and Changemaker Challenge, a platform for Story of Stuff Community members to share their action ideas and commitments. Post yours today!

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO) speaks during the North American Building Trades Unions Conference at the Washington Hilton April 10, 2019 in Washington, DC. Zach Gibson / Getty Images

Colorado senator and 2020 hopeful Michael Bennet introduced his plan to combat climate change Monday, in the first major policy rollout of his campaign. Bennet's plan calls for the establishment of a "Climate Bank," using $1 trillion in federal spending to "catalyze" $10 trillion in private spending for the U.S. to transition entirely to net-zero emissions by 2050.

Read More Show Less
Foto-Rabe / Pixabay

When Trump's Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced its replacement for the Obama-era Clean Power Plan in August 2018, its own estimates said the reduced regulations could lead to 1,400 early deaths a year from air pollution by 2030.

Now, the EPA wants to change the way it calculates the risks posed by particulate matter pollution, using a model that would lower the death toll from the new plan, The New York Times reported Monday. Five current or former EPA officials familiar with the plan told The Times that the new method would assume there is no significant health gain by lowering air pollution levels below the legal limit. However, many public health experts say that there is no safe level of particulate matter exposure, which has long been linked to heart and lung disease.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
A crate carrying one of the 33 lions rescued from circuses in Peru and Columbia is lifted onto the back of a lorry before being transported to a private reserve on April 30, 2016 in Johannesburg, South Africa. Dan Kitwood / Getty Images

By Andrea Germanos

Animal welfare advocates are praising soon-to-be introduced legislation in the U.S. that would ban the use of wild animals in traveling circuses.

Read More Show Less
A tornado Monday in Union City, Oklahoma. TicToc by Bloomberg / YouTube screenshot

Extreme weather spawned 18 tornadoes across five states Monday, USA Today reported. Tornadoes were reported in Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri and Arizona, but were not as dangerous as forecasters had initially feared, the Associated Press reported.

Read More Show Less
A woman walks in front of her water-logged home in Sriwulan village, Sayung sub-district of Demak regency, Central Java, Indonesia on Feb. 2, 2018. Siswono Toyudho / Anadolu Agency /Getty Images

A new study has more than doubled the worst-case-scenario projection for sea level rise by the end of the century, BBC News reported Monday.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Matt Cardy / Stringer / Getty Images

The Guardian is changing the way it writes about environmental issues.

Read More Show Less
Blueberry yogurt bark. SEE D JAN / iStock / Getty Images Plus

By Lizzie Streit, MS, RDN, LD

Having nutritious snacks to eat during the workday can help you stay energized and productive.

Read More Show Less
A 2017 flood in Elk Grove, California. Florence Low / California Department of Water Resources

By Tara Lohan

It's been the wettest 12 months on record in the continental United States. Parts of the High Plains and Midwest are still reeling from deadly, destructive and expensive spring floods — some of which have lasted for three months.

Mounting bills from natural disasters like these have prompted renewed calls to reform the National Flood Insurance Program, which is managed by Federal Emergency Management Agency and is now $20 billion in debt.

Read More Show Less