Everyone who is willing to research climate breakdown ALREADY KNOWS that it’s a huge problem — now we have to reach the people who have been looking the other way either accidentally or intentionally.
Facts about forest fires, hurricanes, food system collapse and our failure to reduce emissions isn’t exactly a secret — it’s published in major newspapers — but most people still don’t understand how much trouble we’re in. If you have access to a platform of any size — it could be a late-night radio show or a small youtube channel, a food blog or maybe just the chalkboard outside of the restaurant where you work — we need you to start talking about the climate crisis. You don’t have to be an expert — just share what you know or, better yet, how you feel. It’s okay to say that you’re scared or angry or sad. It’s okay to be confused and try to work things out with your audience. Share an article that you found meaningful. Ask people to research something you don’t quite understand yourself. If you manage a store or theatre — we can help you prepare an info booth. The more we hear about the climate crisis, the more we will talk about it. And the more we talk about it, the more real it will feel. And when we can no longer pretend it isn’t real — we will act. We will change our worst habits and call up our politicians to demand that they take proportionate action too.
If you have a platform and you want to talk things over — please, please reach out to us (firstname.lastname@example.org). We have spent the last year educating ourselves and others about all aspects of this issue: the science, the economics, the politics, the psychology. We aren’t experts at any of it, but we know who is and we’ve gotten pretty good at explaining things in a compelling way.
Here are some great examples of out-of-the-box climate communications from 2019 (and a couple older ones) to inspire you:
Coldplay put their touring on hold because of the excessive emissions and Shawn Mendes took a moment out of his concert in Brazil to call for more aggressive action on climate change. When Tegan and Sara were on the Strombo Show in early December, they also discussed their discomfort with the environmental impact of touring — it doesn’t take much, we just need people to hear that other people are thinking about this crisis and taking action in their daily lives. We need to make it real.
Childish Gambino made a twist on the typical hip hop summer jam with his song ‘Feels Like Summer.’ The song feels like a typical slow jam but includes lyrics like:
Every day gets hotter than the one before
Running out of water, it’s about to go down
Air that kill the bees that we depend upon
Birds were made for singing, wakin’ up to no sound
Lil Dicky put out a track called Earth with about a billion celebrity cameos. The rapper Samsa put out a climate apocalypse love song called ‘anthropocene.’
The Norwegian Netflix sensation ‘Occupied‘ is a thriller about a world where dismantling fossil fuel infrastructure leads to global strife and intrigue. Kim Stanley Robinson’s latest novel New York 2140 is about people picking up the pieces and trying to rebuild after climate catatostrophe. Banksy put a climate twist on their notorious graffiti with this memorable piece:
Toronto’s Grand Electric restaurant went vegan purely for climate reasons. The owners eat meat — but not often — and they didn’t feel comfortable encouraging people to eat it every day.
Patagonia closed its stores for the Global Strike, ran huge climate ads and also has in-store workshops from climate activist groups like Extinction Rebellion. Lush, Burton, and Ben and Jerry’s also closed for the global Climate Strike. If you run a store or restaurant of any size, we are happy to help you set up a modest climate display and provide you with paper copies of our climate action pledge.
Mr. Beast — a youtuber known for ‘last-to-leave’ challenges where people ride a ferris wheel or sit in a giant bowl of cereal for as long as possible for prizes — launched the massive #teamtrees campaign to plant 20 million trees and promotes it relentlessly in his other videos. A much smaller youtube channel called Goal Guys, did a full video on climate activism in their typical ‘I Try to Learn a new Skill in 30 days’ style and came up with a much more nuanced take on climate action: