How Camping Can Help Combat Global Risks

The World Economic Forum has brought out its Global Risks Overview for 2018 – it makes for bleak reading. While many of us are already aware of many of the challenges we face on this planet, reading through the risks can leave us feeling depressed and overwhelmed. It is easy to succumb to 'oh dear ism' or to bury our heads in the sand. But we should all be facing up to our global problems, and working independently and together to redress at least some of the wrongs. Choosing back-to-basics camping holidays is just one of the small ways in which we can make the change we wish to see.

Camping to Combat Environmental Fragility

Environmental risks continue to dominate the overall global risk landscape. Extreme weather was ranked as the most likely risk in the Global Risks Perception Survey and was ranked third in the top ten list in terms of its impact. Failure of climate-change mitigation and adaptation was ranked second in both likelihood and impact. Environmental risks of various kinds dominated both lists created in the survey. The results of climate inaction are becoming increasingly clear. It is in relation to the environment that the world is most clearly sleepwalking into disaster.

Choosing a low-impact camping holiday is one way to make sure that you are not contributing to the problem. To enjoy a green camping escape we can:

  • Choose eco-friendly camping products and materials.
  • Use slow, carbon neutral methods to reach our camping destinations.
  • Make sure we conserve the natural environment while enjoying the great outdoors.
  • Reduce our energy use while enjoying our camping adventures.
  • Reduce waste (including waste of water and food) and reduce, reuse and recycle.

Camping to Build Bridges and Cement Social Cohesion

The global environment is increasingly one of division and discontent. Geopolitically and economically, differing norms and values form the backdrop to the global risk environment. We tend to focus, more on more, not on the things that unite us, but the things that divide us.

Camping trips can be the perfect opportunity to reach out to those around us and spend some uncomplicated time together – time that can be used to focus on building relationships rather than furthering conflict.

What is more, camping trips can allow us to form meaningful bonds and combat the increasing problem of loneliness in our modern world. Traditional societal bonds have, in many ways, broken down in recent decades. Camping can bring generations and disparate individuals back together.

Camping to Improve Emotional Well-Being

When looking at the environment of global risks, we tend to focus on the economic and political sides of the problems. However, the human side to the global risks environment should not be neglected nor underestimated. The planet-wide risks that we face have significant adverse impact on human psychology and emotional well-being. Unfortunately, for many, this world is an increasingly anxious, unhappy and lonely one.

Camping has been proven to improve individual emotional well-being, reduce stress and create a feeling of balance and equanimity. Even in the face of global crises, we can take time to relax and unwind by forming a closer connection with the natural world.