I grew up 200 meters from a ski slope where I could start the lift myself as soon as we had enough snow. Those days we had snow every winter, even here in Österlen. I could never even imagine that snow would be in short supply in the future. Although my mother was politically engaged on behalf of the environment at the time, I never linked her efforts to the climate and global warming. Eventually the penny dropped and now the climate and environment have become a natural part of every decision I make in my everyday life.
Of course, we had both good and bad winters in the 80’s as well. The fact is that we have not been able to open our ski slope one single day since 2018, and all we would need is about 10 cm (4″) of snow for some serpentine turns on the piste. Snow or not on our little ski slope may not matter. It is significantly worse elsewhere. The clock is ticking and the earth’s average temperature is reaching new record levels all the time. It rises the most at the poles, but all over the world we see regional changes in weather patterns, such as stronger storms, longer droughts, more wildfires, more floods … more fatalities.*
POW – Protect Our Winters
Fortunately, it is us humans who have caused our earth to overheat. That means that it’s also us humans who have the power to curb global warming. We can all do something and there are plenty of climate-smart choices. One of these choices for outdoor recreation enthusiasts is to join Protect Our Winters – POW, an international non-profit organization with passionate outdoor people who, since 2007, have been working to protect winter, the places and lifestyles we all love, from climate change. For us Swedes it’s extra simple because we now have a Swedish sub-organization: Protect Our Winters Sweden. Joel Lundberg, chairman of POW Sweden, tells you exactly what you can do.
How can we support POW?
“The easiest way to support our work is to become a member of our NGO. This is easy via our website and then you also get specific information and invitations to events during the year. As a company, you can apply to become a POW Partner. For that we follow a policy for evaluating ambitions and we have a model with different levels for qualified companies.
“If you only want to donate to our work, that works fine and is very welcome, of course!” says Joel.
If you sign up as a volunteer for POW, what types of things could you assist with then?
“Our volunteers are members who take another step and want to contribute actively to our work. It can be about staffing events, such as film festivals, world championships, world cups, summit tours, and more, but it can also be about writing debate articles, participating in demonstrations, or helping with administrative work in communication, coordinating projects, or finances.”
“There are also good opportunities to join work groups together with our European sister organizations,” Joel explains.
Which POW activities are you most proud of in recent years?
“There are three things I’m extra proud of. Our campaign #väljvintern before the Swedish election in 2018. An enormous volunteer effort and a strong campaign with its own site [www.valjvintern.se] which culminated in large participation in the climate march that coincided with the election.”
“Our POW lounge and our work during the FIS Alpine World Ski Championships in Åre 2019. We had a large group of volunteers who worked for two weeks to talk about sustainable winter sports and to recruit new members, as well as outreach to all companies present at the events.”
“And last but not least, the #leadtheway campaign that we ran last fall and which was coordinated across Europe together with POW’s ambassadors and partner companies to put pressure on EU politicians to raise the ambition for the carbon dioxide emissions reduction targets by 2030,” says Joel Lundberg, chairman for Protect Our Winters Sweden.
Support POW and turn your passion into purpose!
Read more about Protect Our Winters on www.protectourwinters.org and become a member you too!
* according to the Global Climate Risk Index 2021 presented at the Climate Adaptation Summit 2021.