Last night I noticed that the nations of the world wound up their latest UN summit in Poland where emissaries from over 160 countries got together to set the rule book for enforcing new emission standards for fighting climate change. Everyone at the conference somewhat agreed that the target would remain what was settled on in Paris in 2015: 1.5% cap by 2030. It now remains for all the delegates to return to their respective countries to start implementing a plan that realizes this goal. For some, it will be a carbon tax straight out; for others, it will be shutting down coal plants; and then there is a gradual introduction of green technology to replace conventional forms like the combustion engine and oil furnaces. Alongside these lofty national initiatives come an old-hat parallel set for consumers like you and me: switching to biking, becoming Vegan, reinsulating your house, walking more, eating less, video conferencing, buying fewer durable goods, wasting less, and taking public transportation. Living in a fairly large Canadian city these past eight years, I have done most of these things, except going Vegan, realizing some monetary savings along the way, while many of my neighbours are still struggling with recycling. This sorry state of affairs begs the question: why does the COP24 still believe these strategies are doable on a global scale. Is it the argument that every little bit counts that makes the environmental visionaries strive for that critical mass of a groundswell that will make this battle winnable, or is it a veiled warning that if we don’t make these critical changes sooner rather than later, they will be forced on us. A brave new world minimalist style! Given the serious pushback in France, with the Yellow Shirt protest against a hefty carbon tax, I don’t see Canadian consumers readily buying into any climate change program that messes with their highly stressed out household budgets, whether it be gas, food, or lifestyle choices. I can make these changes because my wife and I are comfortably well off, retired, and have successfully downsized.