Small Steps For Big Change

Since I live in Southern California where fires have been ravaging our mountains, neighborhoods and homes of thousands of people, I have decided to write about social change with regard to the environment. Of course there are many reasons fires can start, and sometimes we don’t ever find out the cause, but the information we do have is vital to help prevent the spread of wildfires moving forward. 

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), “since the 1970s, unusually hot summer days (highs) have become more common over the last few decades.” While other parts of the country are experiencing extreme temperatures and weather conditions that are evident in all of the hurricanes, flooding, etc., the West Coast is hit by extreme heat that leaves us more susceptible to wildfires.

Many people think that climate change is not a social issue, but that is simply not true. There is no one magic cure or answer to this major issue, but if everyone made just a concerted effort to be more conscious of their choices, we could be headed in the right direction. Even the simple act of not tossing cigarettes or cigarette butts out the window while driving could potentially save an area from being overtaken by wildfire. 

Basic research has already been conducted on what’s going on in the environment. Now is the time to target specific areas that have markedly extreme consequences of climate change and implement interventions. This can be on a grand scale, nationwide, or on a smaller scale, countywide. So many people are already coming together to do what they can to rebuild their community, but beyond that moving forward, progressive intervention needs to occur so that we can prevent more tragedies from happening in the future. Now is the time for companies, like Rescue: The Behavior Change Agency, to start encouraging young people to be proactive and change the world! 



  1. I appreciate your post. I think a lot of young people take the environment for granted nowadays. Simple things like recycling really are a big issue. I remember on my ship (I’m currently active duty Navy) we had a strict policy of not tossing plastic overboard. For those who don’t know, which I assume is the majority of people, there are about three people who process around 5000 people’s trash throughout the day. This job mostly involves stuffing food bags into a pulping machine, incinerating metals (probably still bad for the environment) and shredding and compressing plastic. Now a big issue is obviously we don’t want to litter, especially when on foreign soil. So what happens when someone dropped a compressed puck of plastic scraps into the water? Well that person specifically got fined thousands of dollars. Some might think this is extreme, but I guarantee that that person won’t be littering again anytime soon whether it be on a large scale like in the Navy or a small scale like at home.

  2. I really enjoyed this post because environmental protection and climate change are things I personally feel strongly about. Often individuals will remove their guilty of poor decisions (loitering, failure to recycle, etc.) by convincing themselves that they don’t make an impact. Ironically, so many people feel this way that if everyone who thought they “didn’t make an impact” would collectively put forth an effort to make better environmentally friendly decisions it would have an enormous impact.

    One thing that I often see however when it comes to this climate change/environmental protection problem is that the blame is often placed solely on the consumer/individual, yet rarely on the larger institutions and industries that cause an enormous amount of the problem. Rather than telling consumers to drive less, and buy electric cars for example – the government should be intervening with the auto industry itself and requiring stricter emissions testing on vehicles, stricter punishments on companies such as Volkswagen that falsify them, and causing a push to provide cheaper reliable alternatives. Unfortunately, politics and industry is often intertwined and it is difficult to win against a very successful lobbying campaign.

  3. Amanda Elizabeth Bright

    I think you brought up an important and relevant social change that needs to happen. The fires in California are horrible and I also agree that people can start making these small changes to make the world a better place. I also think that these little things like littering are affecting the world that we live in however people are not doing anything to change that. With Social Change towards environmental this could make the world a whole different place and a better one at that.

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