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Whether it is Germany's "Heizungsgesetz" or the European Union's "Renaturation Law" there is a certain pattern how resistance evolves. Recently I was on workation sailing the Baltic Sea observing lots of signs of movements against the implementation of protected natural habitats in the Baltic Sea. The fishing 'industry', the tourism, and the water sports enthusiasts all seem united in their protest against the protection of the Baltic Sea. Fact is, that the Baltic Sea is in an extremely poor condition caused by industrial agriculture, over-fishing, and only after that the water sports which could be further divided into extensive uses like sailing and intensive uses like motor boats, jet skis and anchoring. Of course, we have to add more like litter and climate change but that is basically it.

So, more than 90 percent of the people agree that we have to do something to protect the future of our children, but most of us argue, that it should be others to (first) leave their zone of comfort and joy, but not us. That is a well known obstacle to any transformation but there is more: we strive for the feeling of integration not just by protecting what we have, but also by being united, being united by a common enemy which we can fight, even if actually we are not targeted by that enemy. France knows this too well. So, now people unite being against something that actually would not necessarily mean any harm to them and on the contrary would support their wish for a change and a better future. 

To complete this picture we also need to see the drivers of this resistances as there are lobbyists who fear for their business model, oppositions who want the harm the current government, and people who just want to present themselves as important opinion leaders.

This pattern can be found throughout history everywhere in the world but we are now running out of time. And it is not just the bad communication of the government - it is civil society that needs to engage!

If only the protestors would themselves eat less animal products so they could actually claim that water sports is not the first thing we need to change.


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