If I had to design a policy initiative, I would try to include it as much as I can in the foundational texts and laws of that country. I agree with Suzuki when he says that “we need to enshrine environmental protection in our Constitution”: we need to make the concept of protecting and caring for our planet part of the foundational principles of a country. In this way, just like Suzuki said, access to clean water, air, and soil will become a human right that the government needs to protect and ensure.
Although I know that local policy is very effective because it is designed and tailored for the specific community that it impacts, I like to think about international policy and international agreements and solutions when tackling climate change as a global issue. Even if some areas will be much more impacted than others by climate change, it is an issue that will impact every country. I think if there is a solution to the climate problem, it has to do with being local, yes, but also with an international alliance and commitment that every country needs to respect and protect the earth.
In my Bass Connections group, I have been learning about CFCS and how people started by loving them and ended up issuing a global ban on CFCS. The chemical compound of CFCs was found to be causing ozone depletion in the stratosphere. The Montreal protocol of 1987 is an example of countries coming together to talk about a global issue that, at the time, was present only in Antarctica (this was known as the ozone hole). The Montreal protocol was successful in starting effective negotiations among countries that later led to the total ban of CFCs.
When thinking about policy initiatives for the environment, I think that it could be useful to consider planet earth as the living ecosystem that we all share as a common nation and therefore should all be held responsible and liable for its protection as citizen of of the earth.