Environmental Literature | Social Justice | Sustainable Futures

Using Social Media for Good

March 10th, 2017 | Posted by Jessica Marlow in Uncategorized

I, quite frankly, am not good at social media.

I do not have the most friends on Facebook.

I rarely post – if at all – on Instagram.

I wouldn’t know where to start if I decided to get a Twitter.

However —

Social media has power. It influences not only our thoughts but also the very issues we think about – the issues we deem worthy of spending those few extra seconds we have before class starts or the last couple minutes before we go to sleep at night contemplating. For some, it means indulging in Tastemade videos on Snapchat, for others, scrolling through women’s fashion on Pinterest. Or, it could mean spreading awareness about environmental issues and the choices we can make to lessen our negative impact on climate change.

#ecolit290 #recycle #sustainability #actonclimate

A post shared by jessica li (@life_in_the_anthropocene) on

It could mean posting pictures of the world around us, of nature’s many wonders which may not be here in ten years or twenty years for future generations.

#ecolit290 #nature #plants #flowers

A post shared by jessica li (@life_in_the_anthropocene) on

It could even mean exposing the harmful impacts of everyday activities that society has deemed acceptable (i.e. both the cars we drive and the roads we drive on).

oil on water

Media options are numerous, and opportunities are infinite. Coming from someone who owns up to her poor social media skills, if I can make an Instagram account, spread awareness through environmental photography, and have my posts be “liked” by complete strangers, you can too.

Don’t just make a post, make an impact.

Follow me on Instagram: life_in_the_anthropocene

Also, for more information on how social media can help save the environment, check out this article by the Huffington Post.

**One thing to remember as you go forward is to always act – and post – purposefully. Drawing a parallel to two recent and critical environmental documents, the Paris Accords and Popes Francis’ encyclical on the environment, Laudito Si, I encourage you all to follow in Pope Francis’ footsteps. In his multiple chapter long encyclical, Pope Francis delves deeply into the real issue of climate change is at hand and the effects it will have on us all, focusing specifically on impoverished nations. He calls on Christians – using the Bible as evidence – to protect the Earth we live in, to not see it as a cheap and bottomless source of resources meant for us to exploit, but rather a gift in which we are meant to coexist. This encyclical calls on the individual to act, to change behaviors, and in essence,”be the change you want to see in the world,” to quote a very wise man ~ Ghandi. In contrast, the Paris Accords, the product of almost fifty years of deliberation among the international community, failed to put forth anything substantial regarding the issue of climate change, instead encouraging participating nations to follow protocol which is best for their own country and, for developed nations, to help out undeveloped nations when possible. Though both are key documents in the global climate change conversation, one is far more substantial than the other and thus has far greater impact.


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