Baruch Blum

My Climate Crisis Diary (Log 1)

In my first two posts for this blog, my approach was that through this blog I would offer a sort of argument for urgent climate action. I figured that I could provide a well-thought-out response to some of the rationalizations people have that keep them from responding to our present crisis. But one problem with that is that well-thought-out arguments take time. Recent events show that climate models may have underestimated the urgency of the climate crisis (this is a big reason why “the models might be wrong” was always a flawed argument for not taking precautionary measures). As much as I thought the situation was urgent a couple months ago, it seems to be even more urgent. (Why it’s not covered on more front pages is a question for newspaper editors and journalists. Please ask them.) 

So I think my approach now will just be to relate some of the things I’m doing, or trying to do. It will be more personal and specific. And easier to write, because I’m not going to try to offer a robust argument for everything. I don’t know what is the ideal behavior or action to take in these circumstances. 

I recently read the book Why Climate Breakdown Matters by Rupert Read. I’m trying to get other people to read it. One of the things it convinced me of is the importance of making practical preparations for climate breakdown. As he relates in the book, there seems to have been a false dichotomy in the climate movement between mitigation and adaptation. Rather than see it as either/or, we must do everything we can to both mitigate climate change and prepare ourselves as best we can for its effects. Given what we’re seeing, this two-pronged approach seems to be even more necessary now. 

I’ve started buying extra canned food to store, as well as a few other things. Recent data shows that we are in uncharted territory. Widespread crop failure as soon as within the next year or so cannot be ruled out. To be prepared is not the same as panicking (for those who panic about “panic” – we’ve seen with covid how deadly the “it’s too soon to panic” mindset can be, when people conflate precautionary measures with panic). 

Speaking recently with a friend of mine who lives in California, I’m trying to convince him to come up with a contingency plan of moving east. If/when the drought situation on the West Coast becomes much worse, I’d like the people I’m close with to be prepared to make the move ahead of time, rather than wait until true widespread panic sets in. 

On Thursday I went to a meditation protest outside of Citibank headquarters. The “Mindful Rebels” have been doing regular meditation sits there on Thursdays at 6pm. (Along with other major banks, Citibank continues to pour billions into the fossil fuel industry. If you want to make sure your money doesn’t go toward this, you might have to move your money.) I’m not much of a meditator, so I just sat beside the five or six other protesters who were meditating holding up “Citi Stop Funding Fossil Fuels” signs and I watched the Citibank employees leave the building.

About the Author
Baruch Blum is a ''rebel'' with Extinction Rebellion NYC (, trying to convince people to treat the climate emergency as an emergency. He also teaches Yiddish at The Workers Circle (
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