Just when we needed to gather, our public sphere was disintegrating; just when we needed to consume less, consumerism took over virtually every aspect of our lives; just when we needed to slow down and notice, we sped up; and just when we needed longer time horizons, we were able to see only the immediate present. Naomi Klein
In an excellent article on Climate Change as the fight of our lives, Naomi Klein describes the role of consumers as contributors to the mismatch between the climate crisis and societal realities. She describes the challenges of collaboration and consuming less and differently at a time when consumption defines identities. She further shows how in our industrialised, urban societies we often lack a connection to place and the environment.
Restaurants committed to change can demonstrate that a different way of living is possible to the very consumers that need to change and adapt. Food sourced locally and seasonally and produced with fewer inputs can reduce dependence on fossil fuels and create ties to communities and place. These establishments can demonstrate how food waste can be minimised and reused and how energy and water can be conserved. Everything from food choices to preparation, staff policies and waste disposal can be used to communicate to customers how to consume in a better way. One way to “stop somewhere”.