Why climate

The science is clear – the threat is real

Climate change is a global emergency. The impact of human activity on greenhouse gas emissions and land use have compounded environmental harm and created an escalating crisis. The devastation to our planet and to humanity will be immense if we don’t move urgently to limit the damage. A drastic reduction in greenhouse emissions is needed if we are to stand a chance of staying below 1.5°C of warming relative to pre-industrial levels and prevent major climate instabilities. The scale of the problem calls for a transformation of our systems and markets and the creation of a net-zero society.

Human Activity

Human activity

Emissions caused by human activity have caused almost 100% of global warming observed since 1950

Deforestation

Deforestation

Tropical forests now emit more carbon than they are able to absorb from the atmosphere as a result of deforestation and land degradation

Crops

Crops

Rising CO2 levels could push hundreds of millions into malnutrition by 2050

Wildlife

Species/wildlife

The combined effects of global warming and land-use change could cause the world’s ecosystems to lose more than a third of their animal species by 2070

Farming

Farming/land use

The world’s soils have released a damaging 133bn tonnes of carbon since the dawn of agriculture

Sea Level

Sea level rise and ice

The rate of sea level rise resulting from the melting of the Antarctic ice sheet has tripled over the past five years

Ocean Acidification

Ocean acidification

The world’s oceans could become uninhabitable for cold-water corals by the end of the century as a result of ocean acidification

Water

Water

Global warming and land use change will drastically reduce the availability of groundwater

Ocean Warming

Ocean warming

Marine heatwaves have become 34% more likely over past century

Coal

Coal

The consumption of coal has caused around 30% of the increase in the Earth’s temperatures since the late 1800s

Extreme Weather

Extreme weather

68% of all extreme weather events studied to date were made more likely or more severe by human-caused climate change

Ice

Ice

The amount of sea ice in the Arctic during a typical summer has fallen by nearly half compared to the 1970s

This is our chance to build a better future

Addressing the climate crisis is a great opportunity for bold change towards a fairer, healthier and more sustainable society. The need for an urgent overhaul of our economy and way of life is setting into motion a global response to our biggest societal challenges. Creating long-term solutions to climate change requires the buy-in and participation of everybody in society. Cleaner and more efficient communities will raise the quality of life for all citizens. Greater access to clean energy will fuel new jobs and create a dynamic new economy. The benefits of a net-zero society can serve not only to avert disaster, but to create more peace and prosperity.

Environmental

  • The protection of ecosystems and biodiversity
  • The preservation of forests, our natural allies in reducing CO2
  • Reduced air pollution
  • Improved water and soil quality

Societal

  • More social justice and civic engagement
  • Less social upheaval and a reduced need for migration
  • Better public transport and services
  • More resilient communities

Economic

  • Reduced dependency on energy imports
  • Highly efficient industries and infrastructure
  • The creation of millions of new jobs
  • Improved livelihoods for small farmers

Public health

  • More available food and improved diets
  • Fewer health complications due to air pollution
  • Prevention of mosquito-borne illnesses
  • More efficient public health services