Deeds not Words: 8 Things you Can Do Now after COP26
After 2 weeks of negotiations at COP26, the Glasgow Climate Pact has been finalised. Limiting global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees is crucial, but Climate Action Tracker estimates that even if all the pledges made are met, we are still on course for 2.4 – 2.7 degrees of warming. To quote Greta Thunberg, COP26 has been more “blah, blah, blah” – a lot of talk when what we need is action. Yes, there have been some headline grabbing announcements – such as ending deforestation by 2030 – but a closer look at the details shows these pledges to be greenwashing.
Our “leaders” are not listening to the science – we have been warned it is “code red” for humanity and we need action now to have any chance of staying below 1.5 degrees. With the ineffective outcome of COP26, it would be understandable to feel that there is little hope left.
There is still hope, however, if we all take action as individuals to pressure governments, banks and companies to do the right thing and end the use of fossil fuels, alongside reducing our personal emissions. To quote Magid Magid in The Art of Disruption, “Hope is not a strategy, and without a plan, it’s just a wish. Alongside having hope, we have to set goals and work out how we achieve these goals through action. We have to be participants, agents and a force for good: as well as having hope, we must be a hope, too.”
With that in mind, here are some of our top eco-actions you can do which will make a difference:
1. Go to a Climate Protest
One of the best ways to make our voices heard is to take to the streets. If we make enough noise, the government can’t ignore us!
During the first week of COP26 Caroline went to Glasgow to join other activists in voicing their fears about the terrifying lack of political will to end fossil fuels. Last weekend we both attended the Global Day of Action for Climate Justice alongside thousands of others around the country (and world) crying out for system change.
It’s likely there will be a lot more climate protests happening now COP26 is over, so consider joining a local Fridays For Future or Extinction Rebellion protest. See our top tips for going to a climate protest.
2. Move Your Money
Check out our post on banks that are financing climate change and if your bank is on the list, move your cash to a greener provider and let your old bank know why you’ve left.
3. Keep Hassling
Keep up the pressure on your MP, councillors and companies by writing, tweeting and signing petitions. Make sure your voice is heard!
4. Travel Greener
5. Reduce Fossil Fuel Use at Home
At the moment, we are all very reliant on fossil fuels for energy, heating and transport. But that doesn’t mean we can’t limit our use as much as possible. See our post on 30 ways to save energy to use fewer fossil fuels in your home.
6. Don’t Waste Anything
We’ve written loads of posts on reducing waste – check out the highlights here:
7. Buy Less Stuff
Fast fashion, built-in obsolescence, single-use plastic – consumerism has a lot to answer for. Globally, 60% of greenhouse gas emissions are due to household consumption. So, by buying less stuff, you can reduce your emissions and save money! When you do need something, consider buying second hand, borrowing or renting, before buying new. Check out our post on second hand clothes for inspiration.
8. Keep on Recycling
We know that COP26 hasn’t been a complete failure and the Glasgow Climate Pact is a step in the right direction. However, we don’t have time for incremental steps. The world urgently needs to be making huge strides to avert climate chaos if we are to have any chance of halving global emissions by 2030 and limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees. Pledges are NOT action and we all need to play an urgent role in converting words into action.