Thanks for all the positive comments about my pictorial retrospective on 2009. Now that I’ve looked at the past – I’m now looking to the future. If you want to find out if I’m coming to a city near you in the next few months, read on.
My overriding goal for this year is to figure out how I can be of most use. No unkind comments about removing myself from the gene pool, thank you very much! I hope there are actions of a more positive kind that I can take. In Copenhagen, I had hoped to spread some inspiration, and maybe even show some moral leadership on the virtues of leading a less materialistic, more experiential, life.
Yick, yick, yick – you’re probably making gagging noises at this point. Maybe this all sounds very holier-than-thou, in which case please excuse me. But really, what else do I have to offer? I’m not a scientist, politician, or experienced activist. So as far as I could see, my most convincing contribution was to BE the change I wanted to see in the world, by showing that the pursuit of excessive amounts of “stuff” – with all the collateral damage to the environment – is not necessary to have a happy, fulfilling life.
Do I feel like I made a difference in Copenhagen? Yes, I do, but to a very limited extent.
Do I feel my strategy was on the right lines? For a while I doubted this, and wondered if I should get more involved in political activism. But I don’t have the appetite or the inclination for it. I think I was on the right lines, and should stick with the same strategy, but crank up the energy, the urgency, and the outreach by several notches, and build on the new relationships and alliances I forged in Copenhagen to take the strategy to a new level.
So how does this overall strategy look in terms of what I do and where I go? Well, unfortunately it looks like a certain amount of air travel is going to be involved yet again, but less than last year. Although my travels are offset, I completely acknowledge that it is better not to incur the carbon debt in the first place. No doubt some will argue that I only travel as much as I choose to, but my experience has been that having meetings and giving presentations in person is enormously more impactful than through electronic means. So I could sit at home (if I had one) and do all my work over the internet, but that doesn’t seem the right course for me at this stage in my life. I will just ensure that I make every journey pay its way in terms of people met and messages delivered – to the max.
So… here is my approximate itinerary, still extremely subject to change:
Jan 11 San Francisco
Jan 11-Feb 3 Hawaii – working on book and fundraising
Feb 3-5 Vail, Colorado – Vail Symposium
Feb 5-10 San Francisco Ocean Film Festival – film of “Rowing The Atlantic” being screened (finalist in Banff Film Festival)
Feb 10-28 Hood River, Oregon – working on book (Feb 22-26 Ocean Sciences Meeting in Portland)
Mar 1-18 Kiribati – as guest of President of Kiribati – TBC
Mar 18-23 Seattle – to speak at National Geographic Live! presentation series
Mar 24-Apr 2 TBC
Apr 3-10 TED Galapagos – I am speaking at this prestigious event. One-off ocean-themed TED in honour of Sylvia Earle
Apr 10-15 Kiribati – to prepare for launch
April 15 to late July or early August – Pacific III: final stage to Australia (fingers crossed!)
Until October or November – in Australia and/or Southeast Asia
December – Mexico City for COP16
So – another quiet, boring year – NOT! Of course you can follow it all here on the blog. I’m excited about the next 12 months, and I hope you’ll be interested enough to follow along through the power of the internet – most of the enjoyment with none of the carbon emissions!