These ideas won’t save the biosphere, but they might make some difference…
Several times a day I am distressed to see drivers sitting in their stationary, fossil fuel-powered vehicles, with the engines idling. It’s one thing to do this while waiting for a traffic light to change. It’s another altogether to pull over and eat a meal or swipe your smartphone for ten minutes while your engine is uselessly converting derivatives of ancient plant material into greenhouse gas. Every week I see multiple private motorists and several people in company vehicles blithely doing this.
I have often been abused for reprimanding people dropping litter, and as a cyclist I have been yelled at by unrepentant motorists for pointing out the dangers of them occupying the cycle boxes at junctions (for example). I am reluctant to subject myself to further stress or risk (probably futile) by confronting negligent climate change-accelerators. But there are other options. I have had two ideas:
(1) Those of us who care about the biosphere could carry a laminated card (A4?) with the following polite ‘social norms‘ message on it:
A climate catastrophe is unfolding.
Do you really need to sit there with your engine idling?
Most people would switch their engines off.
Please do the same.
We could then display this whenever we see such ecocidal activity. It would be less confrontational and risky than directly confronting the miscreants, and it would spread the message widely, helping to build a supportive community of responsible global citizens.
(2) When identifiable corporate vehicles are involved one could note the time, place and licence plate number and post the details on a name-and-shame site (and/or let the organisations know about their drivers’ behaviour).
Perhaps councils or even national government could help, assuming they are serious about combating climate change.
What do you think of these ideas?