Is There Hope For The Environment In 2020?

Another bushfire-tinted sunrise in Brisbane. Is there hope for the environment in 2020?

Is there hope for the environment in 2020? The stream of requests for me to give people hope continues to grow.

As a conservationist, I’m really sick of being right. If you want hope, I suggest you read the most intelligent thing to be said about leadership and coal in 2019 and then push for it to happen: ‘New coalmines in Queensland don’t help existing communities, they hurt them’, by Richard Denniss.

If you want inspiring leaders, look to people like Carol Sparks, Mayor of Glen Innes Severn Council, NSW: ‘We’ve been in bushfire hell in Glen Innes – and the scientists knew it was coming’.


The actions I have taken here at Bellis and which I encourage others to adopt are the brakes, airbags and seatbelts to help protect us in the coming global environmental car crash.

Change at a household level isn’t enough without government leadership and action on Climate Repair.

If you want hope, I suggest you read the most intelligent thing to be said about leadership and coal in 2019 and then push for it to happen: ‘New coalmines in Queensland don’t help existing communities, they hurt them’, by Richard Denniss.

If you want leadership, look to people like Carol Sparks, Mayor of Glen Innes Severn Council, NSW: ‘We’ve been in bushfire hell in Glen Innes – and the scientists knew it was coming’.

At a household level, in 2003, this northerner moved to Brisbane from Sydney to establish a personal project: an affordable, sustainable house and garden in an ordinary suburb. The latest demonstration of what I have been doing for over thirty years.

In 1986, Jude and Michel Fanton founded the Seed Savers’ Network and published a manual to help people grow their own food security.

In 1993, the National Toxics Network was founded for a toxic-free future for all, the same year that Householders’ Options to Protect the Environment (QLD) formed to promote the things any Australian can do to secure our future. I am happy to be involved with them and their work.

I also vote for climate action; my bank supports sustainable development; my superannuation is ethical and successful; my home generates more power than it uses; all wastewater is recycled to grow food at home; I plant trees; I raise money for environmental action. I coach people in sustainable horticulture: my website and this page are followed in 109 countries and I answer 8-10,000 single gardening questions free each year.

It’s 2020. We’ve only experienced 1.5C of Global Warming so we are still lucky. When the Arctic experiences its first ice-free month, that’s the time when opportunities for climate repair dry up.

Do your bit to get organised as best you can because by that time you’ll need that safety belt.

Mass extinctions are what they are, so in the absence of intelligent national and state leadership, people need to toughen up, to get organised as best you can, and to make sure every year is a year lived well.

Jerry Coleby-Williams

Director, Seed Savers’ Network Inc.
Patron, National Toxics Network Inc.
Patron, Householder’s Options to Protect the Environment Inc.
Bellis, Brisbane’s award-winning sustainable house and garden
2nd January 2020