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The Big Question: What Are You Doing To Fight Climate Change?

A man and woman hold a sign reading "Grandparents here to save forest lake for generations to come."
Mara Hoplamazian
New Hampshire Public Radio
Two people hold a sign protesting the potential development of a new landfill in Dalton, New Hampshire.

We want to hear from you about the big (and small) questions that shape our lives. Then, we want to put you on the air. Each month, we’ll ask a new question, collect your recorded responses, and air some of them on All Things Considered with host Peter Biello.

As the effects of climate change become ever-present in our lives, we want to hear how you're dealing with it in your personal life. Maybe you recycle often. Maybe you've converted to a hybrid vehicle. Maybe you take your concerns to the ballot box. Let us know.

This month’s question is: What are you doing to fight climate change?

Your responses

As climate change touches every facet of our lives, we wanted to hear from you about it through our new project, The Big Question. We heard from many of you about new habits, new products and how you're taking a stand.

Peter Biello: As climate change touches every facet of our lives, we wanted to hear from you about it through our new project, the big question we asked. What are you doing to fight climate change? And we heard from many of you about new habits, new products and how you're taking a stand.

Eriko from Newmarket: This is Eriko from Newmarket. I think just in the course of my lifetime, I've seen the effects of climate change, not just anecdotally and seeing changes in weather, and I'm from California, so seeing the terrible wildfires there has really encouraged me to do my part. And we have children and grandchildren and we would like to see them grow up in a safe world.

Ed from Newmarket: This is Ed from Newmarket. We're just two people and there's only so much that we can do. But I guess we feel strongly, Eriko and I, feel strongly that if everybody did just a little bit, that it would really add up to a lot.

Paul from Weare: This is Paul Doscher, I live in Weare, New Hampshire, with my wife, Deborah. First of all, we built a solar heated house, passive solar heated house, which we live in. We grow a lot of our own food organically in our own garden. And one of the things we also did was permanently protect our 28-acre woodlot and farm with a conservation easement so that it will always be managed for sustainable forestry. And, of course, produce the firewood that we need, which is a small percentage of its annual growth of wood.

Steve from Ashland: So, I'm Steve Orlich and I live in Ashland. I don't want to be part of that problem. I mean, as much as possible, I'd like to not be part of the problem, you know, and and just live in a way that makes sense.

We also heard from Sandy Sonnichsen in Goshen.

Sandy cut.wav

Sandy: "My name is Sandy Sonnichsen, and I live in Goshen, New Hampshire. I feel that in my own life, I'm doing the best I can, but I know that the bigger picture is that my measures are just a drop in the bucket and what really counts is convincing the people around me that climate change is upon us and that we can't put this off to the next generation. It's here right now and we all have to have our hair on fire to do something about this. And somehow the biggest issue is convincing other people and I don't know how to do that. So, I spend a lot of my time feeling that the world is doomed. I wish I had the eloquence and the maybe it's the psychological understanding to know how to get other people worried as I am and willing to make sacrifices that individually may not be that significant so that we together can change the destiny of this world."

We also heard from Jessica Dunbar.


Jessica: "My name is Jessica, and I live in Bow, New Hampshire. I have been especially concerned about climate change since the IPCC Code Red Report came out not that long ago. I've always been concerned about the environment and I've always taken climate change seriously. But that report really drove home for me just how urgent the threat is, and especially now that I have two young boys, three and five, that threat feels all the more palpable to me, and I really, really got scared really kind of broke down when I envisioned what their future might actually be like. It was like a doomsday movie playing in my head and my children were in it."

Jessica says she's been trying to focus on the things she can do, like recycling, composting and buying used goods. And she's gotten involved in her town's efforts to become more environmentally conscious.

"Trying to focus on the positive, but it's a back and forth for me, it's I get really, really worried and scared. I physically got sick to my stomach and weak and shaky just to think of it. And then I feel this relief when I think about the things we're doing right now, and I try to look for hope wherever I can find it. And it's just been very emotional and stressful, and it's really taken over my life recently. It's become something that I feel I have to work on all the time and just keep trying to do better because my kids lives. It feels are at stake."

Music by Taoudella.

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Steps to take in the NHPR app to submit an answer for The Big Question

Things to remember:

  • Start with your first name and the town or city where you live
  • Limit your voice memo to 1 minute
Julia Furukawa is the host of All Things Considered at NHPR. She joined the NHPR team in 2021 as a fellow producing ATC after working as a reporter and editor for The Paris News in Texas and a freelancer for KNKX Public Radio in Seattle.
Peter Biello is the host of All Things Considered and Writers on a New England Stage at New Hampshire Public Radio. He has served as a producer/announcer/host of Weekend Edition Saturday at Vermont Public Radio and as a reporter/host of Morning Edition at WHQR in Wilmington, North Carolina.
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