What can we do about climate change?

Tackling climate change will take all parts of society, all across the globe.

It will take new laws, new technology, and new actions. It’s a big job but together we can stop climate chaos. There’s a big role for the government to play. And there are simple things you can do now.

The I Count campaign calls on the government to:

  • Take a lead on the global stage, working for an international agreement to cut carbon pollution. World-wide carbon pollution must be in decline by 2015.
  • Cut the UK’s emissions by at least 3% year on year.
  • Help the poorest countries get access to clean energy, help them cut out poverty and deal with the climate disasters they are already facing.

And here are simple things you can do now:

1. Home Sweet Home
Each household in the UK creates about 4.5 tonnes a year of CO2 just for heating. A typical elephant weighs around 3 tonnes. So that’s 1.5 elephants per home, or a whopping 38 million for the whole UK (about the same as the CO2 from 6 coal-fired power stations).

In the UK, a quarter of our energy demand comes from heating buildings. So, turn that thermostat down by 1oC, insulate your loft and put that snug jumper on.

2. The Power Of Off
Did you know that the average house has a dozen appliances on standby at any one time? Hunt them down, turn them off. That’s half a million tonnes of CO2 saved already. Nice one.

3. Big Business - Big Burners
Look at the sun, look how it shines…

The big UK power companies chuck out around a third of all UK carbon pollution. A little consumer kicking will help convince them that the time has come to invest more - much more - in clean technologies.

And you can install solar panels or put a dinky little wind turbine on your roof - we’ve got 40% of Europe’s wind so we might as well make use of it if we can.

Check out the Energy Saving Trust for more detail about what you can do at home.

4. People power
It’s simple - visit action and write to the Prime Minister. Challenge the PM to show more leadership. If we speak with one voice on the issue, politicians won’t dare to ignore us. It’s called people power. Help them see it’s a choice between retaining their seat - or a kick in the seat of their pants.

5. Flying
Say you were to fly to Athens for some summer sun: the flight there and back would use approximately the same amount of energy as all of your heating, cooking, lighting and motorized transport - not for just a day or two but for over two years. It’s staggering. And aviation is the fastest growing contributor to climate change. Please try to take at least one less flight a year and also promise you:

-won’t fly if you can take a train or boat
-will take more holidays in our lovely, comfy UK
-will use video conferencing if you can

6. Drive Less
Try to not drive - and lose those love handles by cycling or walking. But if you do have to drive please switch to a car that’s less gas guzzling - or even a hybrid car.

They’re cool and those 4x4s cost you more to run anyway.

>> What are the impacts of climate change?

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