COVID-19 has rapidly changed the world we live in, as governments rightly prioritise our safety and wellbeing and ask us all to stay home. One of the upshots, for those of us lucky enough to be well, is that we now have plenty of time to reflect. Read more
Category Archives: Climate change
This post is by Shaun Spiers, executive director at Green Alliance and Thomas Hale, associate professor in global public policy at the Blavatnik School of Government, University of Oxford.
With just over eight months to go, we now have a new COP26 president in place and preparations for the biggest international summit the UK has ever hosted are in full swing. Alok Sharma has no easy task. The eyes of the world will be on Glasgow this November for the UN climate change conference. Read more
What if the mere possibility of future greenhouse gas removal technologies (GGRs) could be influencing the perception of climate risk and policy decisions being made today?
This is the premise behind a new body of work by Nils Markusson, Rebecca Willis and Duncan McLaren looking at the possibility of ‘mitigation deterrence’, a concept whereby decarbonisation is put off due to optimism about future possibility of CO2 removal. Read more
The aviation industry body Sustainable Aviation has just released a road map to net zero by 2050. While this is a welcome change in ambition from the previous industry-set target of halving emissions by 2050, it rests on a lot of assumptions which don’t stand up to close examination and it has some important omissions which will make it difficult or impossible to keep global heating to 1.5C. Read more
This post is by Colin Hines, convenor of the UK Green New Deal Group.
The environment movement needs to learn two lessons from the election result. First, that despite all the coverage of climate events and growing public clamour for something drastic to be done about it, 12 December was definitely not a ‘climate election’. Read more
This post is by Natasha Parker, Global Action Plan’s head of wellbeing and consumerism
Young people are growing up in an unprecedented time of hyper-consumerism, where ubiquitous advertising compels them to be preoccupied with how they look, what they own and to chase approval from peers through social media. Read more
As the UK heads to the polls once more, there’s something different this time round. In previous elections, climate change barely got any airtime. Now, as poll after poll shows that people want action, politicians are talking about the climate crisis, and offering voters their prescriptions for action. Read more
In Paris in 2015, the world pledged to keep global temperatures to well below two degrees, or to 1.5c if possible. But when it came to concrete plans, their actions added up to a trajectory to well above three degrees. To fill the gap between goal and action, they promised to ratchet their emissions down in five years’ time, to match their actions to their aspirations.
The Glasgow climate summit next year is the point when that ratchet will happen. Unfortunately, the signs do not look good: Read more
This post is by Rhian Ebrey. It is based on her research as a masters student at the University of Leeds.
I think that, writing this following the biggest global climate strike ever, it’s safe to say I’m not alone in feeling a growing dread with each successive IPCC report predicting the urgency of the global climate crisis. And yet, this urgency does not appear to be shared by everyone. I feel helpless and frustrated as world leaders appear hesitant to commit to the necessary changes needed to save our future and the planet. But the growing awareness of shared alarm and frustration, embodied through Greta Thunberg’s refreshingly direct speech at the UN’s COP24 climate conference last year, has sparked a social revolution, with prominent grassroots movements, including Extinction Rebellion and the Youth Strikes, growing around the world.
“We are facing an unprecedented global emergency… we are in the midst of a mass extinction of our own making.”
“Our house is on fire…. I want you to act as you would in a crisis. I want you to act as if our house is on fire. Because it is.”
“Winning slowly is the same as losing.”
“To pursue never-ending economic growth – or even to keep things ticking along as they are – is to gamble with the fate of humanity. We need nothing short of a transformation of the way we live our lives.”
Statements like these, from Extinction Rebellion, Greta Thunberg, Bill McKibben and Caroline Lucas, might once have been dismissed as scaremongering. Increasingly, as the evidence of climate and ecological breakdown piles up, they are being heard as the sober truth. Read more