It was on this trip that I read a New York Times article – shared by my friend Jo (@treesnpeace) – that got me really thinking. This article drew attention to the antithetical nature of flying to see the beauty of the world, when this action itself causes so much damage. My favourite thing to do is scuba dive. Peacefully observing the incredible marine world is my ultimate happy place. But, year on year as sea temperatures rise, these ecosystems are collapsing. Corals are bleaching and dying. Rising emissions are responsible for this. So, when I became aware of the fact that a domestic flight in the US from New York City to Los Angeles emitted the same amount of emissions as the average American does in a month, I was shocked. How could I reconcile my passion for travel with my desire to see a zero-carbon future? How could I continue my flying habits, if they held some responsibility for killing the beautiful nature I was travelling to see?
Learning that only 10% of people have ever been on a plane helped change my perception of flying from something that is a right to something that is a privilege. This acknowledgment of my privilege has been so key to organising my thoughts around this whole issue.