Matt Lie-Paehlke gives you an encouraging smile and reminds you that because we need a total transformation throughout our economy, there are jobs that need doing on many different scales. Some of them will require you to take time off work or make climate activism your new hobby but many of them — like talking about Climate Breakdown and Climate Solutions more often — can fit seamlessly into your daily life. Then he mysteriously turns into a webpage. How spoOoooOOoookky!
- If you haven’t already done it, set your laundry machine to use cold water. This is biggest carbon reduction you can get for just pressing a button or turning a switch. Turning your water heater down a few degrees is also super easy.
- Start following a non-profit that is committed to climate organizing and advocacy. Act350 is one of the best. If you live in the U.S., the Climate Mobilization is organizing a massive climate response on the scale of America’s World War 2 mobilization.
- Get political! Vote for parties with realistic climate action plans and demand realistic plans by calling candidates and elected officials or visiting their offices.
- Make Climate Breakdown Visible. Put up a sign on your desk encouraging people to talk climate with you. Put your favourite climate organization in your email signature. When people ask you ‘how are you doing?’ or ‘what are you up to?’ — tell them about your climate worries or your efforts to reduce your carbon footprint.
- Go Net-Zero right now! Use this website to calculate your carbon footprint and then buy carbon offsets for all the carbon you use — the cost is surprisingly low considering the impact that it makes. Making changes like flying less and eating less beef will bring down the cost of your offsets.
- Develop a climate plan for your office. Talk to your coworkers, see who wants to help, then do some research and develop a plan. Many changes will be appealing to management because they will lower expenses.
- If you want to encourage your friends and family to reduce their carbon footprints you can use our pledge sheets. Try leading by example; just telling people about how much my family has enjoyed our recent staycations has led a number of my friends to follow suit.
- If you live in Canada, you can sign up for Renewable Natural Gas through Bullfrog Power. Renewable Natural Gas is collected by capturing gases from decaying organic waste that would otherwise have rotted in landfills releasing methane into the atmosphere. Signing up only takes a few minutes and doesn’t require you to change your existing natural gas provider.
- If you work in the media you have a HUGE platform to drive the climate conversation. Many news reports about the impacts of climate change — storms, droughts, new diseases — don’t even mention their connection to human-caused global warming. Check out endclimatesilence.org for tips on better climate reporting. If you run a non-news media platform like a fashion blog or an e-sports youtube channel or a jazz magazien, you can produce a special issue, article or episode about climate issues and solutions.
- If you’re a secondary school teacher, teach your students about Greta Thunberg and other young climate activists. Help them make time in their schedules for political organizing and advocacy. Curriculum demands can be challenging to keep up with but, right now, we are lying to our children by telling them to focus on pursuing ordinary careers even while their governments fail to take sufficient action to slow climate breakdown.
- Donate to a climate or environmental organization like Act350, Greenpeace, the Sierra Club Foundation or the David Suzuki Foundation.