An ex-Prime Minister of Australia once called climate change, “the great moral, economic and environmental challenge of our generation”. That’s a big challenge to cope with.

We can all help nature adapt to a new climate, in ways that suit every one of us: whether through political or personal action, at local or global scales. We need them all.

We can’t rely on other “special people” – this is a job for everyone. But we do have to take special care of ourselves, because our greatest strength will always be our ability to stay positive. Whatever the task, positivity inspires us to keep going and others to join in.

If that sounds glib, it shouldn’t. Sometimes, keeping positive will be really, really hard. We and our children will see the natural areas that we love change in ways that will never be reversed. We will see society respond in ways that, in the long run, cannot be helpful. Yet, positivity will lie at the heart of all the great things we achieve.

A volunteer planting day alongside the Mulgrave River, Far North Queensland.

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.
- Margaret Mead

Remember, there are many practical things we can do to help nature adapt to a new climate. We can reluctantly accept the changes we cannot stop, and devote our energy to the things we can influence. We can celebrate every success, no matter how fleeting or small. We can continue to learn and grow.

And every so often, we can take time out to reflect and recharge. As we recharge, we rejuvenate ourselves and those around us. In the big scheme of things, the things we achieve are invaluable, but the things we inspire others to achieve are superlative.

To help nature adapt to a new climate, we need to take special care of ourselves. We will always need more than that, but we cannot get by with less.

To help nature adapt to a new climate

  • We are striving for a positive future.
  • We are focusing on the things we can influence.
  • We are celebrating our successes and sharing new knowledge.
  • We are pausing to reflect, re-charge our batteries and learn new skills.
  • We know that every small action inspires others to do more.


This content is adapted with permission from text written by Dr Ian Lunt for the VicNature2050 booklet 10 things we can all do to help nature adapt to a new climate.

VicNature2050 was organised by the Victorian National Parks Association, The Royal Society of Victoria and The University of Melbourne’s Bio21 Institute, and supported by the Victorian Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning and Parks Victoria.

Other organisations who have participated in the VicNature2050 partnership include La Trobe University; Deakin University; Greening Australia; and the Arthur Rylah Institute for Environmental Research.

More about VicNature2050