I am reading the book, Eaarth, by Bill McKibben (a NY Times review is here).  He writes about making a difference in the world on which we live.  He provides numerous  examples that have all happened in the 21st century, none of them positive or encouraging. He makes the point that the place in which we live today is not, and never will be again, like the place in which we lived when most of us were born.  He talks about not saving the Earth for our grandchildren but rather how our parents needed to have done things to save the earth for them–that it is too late for the grandchildren.  Although this book is very discouraging, it got me thinking.


Isn’t making a difference what we as Extension professionals strive to do?

Don’t we, like McKibben, need criteria to determine what that difference can/could/would be made and look like?

And if we have that criteria well established, won’t we be able to make a difference, hopefully positive (think hand washing here)?  And like this graphic, , won’t that difference be worth the effort we have put into the attempt?  Especially if we thoughtfully plan how to determine what that difference is?


We might not be able to recover (according to McKibben, we won’t) the Earth the way it was when most of us were born; I think we can still make a difference–a positive difference–in the lives of the people with whom we work.  That is an evaluative opportunity.



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