The predictions rang true – this year’s fire season came out of the corner early like a raging bull landing a solid left (to Fort Nelson) followed by a dizzying uppercut (to Fort McMurray, again).

It’s not even June yet and we’ve been seeing unprecedented evacuations due to wildfires, exacerbated by drought and bone dry conditions.

Not surprising that some residents have pulled up stakes and moved to other parts of the province, and even out of province, to escape the hazard. But there’s really nowhere to run anymore; climate change has seen to that. Even Vancouver Island, known for its wetness, isn’t immune to this wrath. It has reached the point that summers are no longer enjoyable because you don’t know if your house will still be standing at the end of it. 

What humankind has done to the earth may never be reversed, but we can’t just throw up our hands in defeat and say there is nothing we can do. While big corporations can keep doing what they are doing all the way to the bank (with governments in tow), we as individuals can do things that at least make us feel good about reducing our carbon footprint.

For example, the David Suzuki Foundation and the United Nations have some good ideas:

• Ride the backs of elected officials to help Canada meet its climate targets.

• Swap your furnace for a heat pump, and replace your gas fireplace with an electric model.

• Wash your clothes in cold water and hang them out to dry (don’t worry, your neighbours have seen underwear before).

• Take public transit or ride a bike. Make a big difference by taking fewer flights that produce a lot of greenhouse gases.

• Consume less, compost more, re-use and re-purpose.

• Support the Indigenous way of life by being stewards and defenders of the land.

• Do not support fossil fuel expansion; install solar panels instead.

• Grow your own food, eat less meat, and share what you don’t need. Don’t waste anything.

• Volunteer to help a “green” organization by cleaning up neighbourhood parks, rivers, beaches, and trails. 

Lyonel Doherty, editor