My parents, originally from flood-ridden Bangladesh, made Cornwall their home. During the early 1990s I was schooled in the small coastal town of Penzance. I remember back then we were taught about climate change and that the end of the world was nigh, given the levels of CO2 being pumped into the atmosphere fundamentally causing the ice caps to melt.
Aerosols containing CFCs were a problem and the opening of the ozone. I was convinced that clever 90s advertising campaigns like ‘The Lynx Effect’ were responsible and the company should have been tried at The Hague – partly because I’m still bitter that it had little effect on delivering its godly appeal promises on us geeky hormonal teenagers who’d inadvertently caused harm to the environment.
During our youth we’re all passionate, pint-sized activists. After learning about such topics, I’d return home to put them into practice with my family – I’d love the feeling of having the upper hand on such occasions, lecturing my elders, and feeling as if I had done a great job applying positive changes on why we needed to act in order to protect the planet. I would hold them to ransom and start with “if we don’t implement x.., then we’ll contribute to the drowning of nan and our wider family in Bangladesh because of rising sea water”. I was pretty dramatic!
Enayet Rasul founder of Arracca
It’s likely my parents just humoured me, but often my little voice would influence change as we adopted habits like recycling, which is still upheld today, or even going meat free – a campaign presented by my little sister, fully compliant for approximately a month before later settling on a more reduced consumption. My dad, was an advocate as it saved a few pounds off the weekly shopping.
Children foster an amazing power to provoke and challenge behaviours but for me as an adult, I’d lost my way for the cause, until now. It’s clear that, a quarter of a century later the planet is continuing to face its biggest challenges. Here in the south west, we’re blessed with amazing nature and the most picture perfect beaches, but they too can be ruined by broken bottles and other rubbish which are now entering our food chain.
With thanks to the likes of Greta and Sir David, we’re all aware of the issues we face and we should all be doing more, instead of refusing to accept the lethal status quo. We know it’s important to take action when it comes to our natural surroundings and so the time is now to release our inner activist.
Enayet Rasul is the founder of fintech, Arracca, encouraging the public to make positive changes by highlighting their personal carbon footprint. Via a climate app, users can become carbon neutral at the tap of a button. The app will provoke, measure and encourage action and will be available free when launched next year.