MISS OHLALA REFLECTS ON THE PEAKS THAT OFFSET THE MANY PITS OF 2020 IN AN ATTEMPT TO KICK 2021 OFF ON AN OPTIMISTIC NOTE.
We’re stepping into the new year full of relief over the end of 2020 – finally! However, despite all the challenges and losses that last year brought to us as a global community, it’s vital to hold onto any positive aspects. For starters, women proved to be great leaders when it came to tackling the pandemic.
Jacinda Ardern, prime minister of New Zealand, led a nationwide effort to eradicate the virus and became a reference to the world – and unsurprisingly returned for a second term after a landslide victory. Taiwan also fought the virus with strong leadership by its president, Tsai Ing-wen, followed by Sanna Marin in Finland and Angela Merkel in Germany. They all faced the invisible enemy head-on by opting for early lockdowns, embracing technology, and responding decisively. Mother Nature is another female who triumphed. With the world forced to stop or slow down, carbon emissions fell drastically and the result was an immense difference in the air we breathe.
This pause has resulted in countries ready to make some long-term changes – China, Japan, and South Korea have all committed to net-zero emissions by the middle of the century. In the US, Joe Biden is planning to pursue a $2 trillion climate plan. Meanwhile, Apple is aiming to become carbon-neutral by 2030, and Walmart by 2040. And these are just a few examples. Now look around. What positive changes took place in your community? Did you end up doing something that you wouldn’t have if it were not for the pandemic? The truth is that 2021 is still carrying many of the burdens of 2020, so let’s once again take a cue from Pantone and look ahead with both strength and positivity, resilience and hope.