So COP? Your power to work on climate change.

Walking the talk!

Climate change is a moral and ethical problem. It is a result of the human choices made in the past and which we continue to make. While political processes are necessary, but at times frustrating, we can address climate change through the choices we make now and in the future. Here are some ideas of things you can do:

  • Challenge yourself, your friends, your neighbours, your workmates and your political leaders to make lifestyle changes that can reduce human impact on the planet.
  • Talk to people about climate change and its implications, and then suggest doing something together.
  • Reduce your individual energy and water use, at home, at work and when you travel.
  • Consider alternatives to travel such as skype, telephone conferencing and if you must travel allocate yourself a decreasing travel carbon footprint budget each year.
  • Consume less and consider how you will ultimately dispose of anything you buy.
  • Switch to renewable energy wherever possible and lobby for the creation of a policy context that is supportive of the transition to clean energy supply.
  • Get informed about climate policy processes and contribute your opinion by making an individual submission or endorsing the submissions of organisations like Project 90 who keep their subscribers informed of these opportunities.

Climate change is a huge issue with many facets. The UNFCCC COP process illustrates how hard it is to talk about it together, as it touches on so many aspects of our lives. Despite all of this, we need to act, and act now. We need to change our behaviour, our lifestyle and rethink many aspects of our lives. You can start in your daily life today with some of the practical suggestions above and on our website. If you’d like to do more, contact us, we have ideas and projects and there is work to do!

A number of sources were used in this series of 5 blogs here are the most important:

  • SANEA-presentations on 17th January 2012 by: Joanne Yawitch, NBI and Karin Ireton, Standard Bank.
  • “COP17: What happened? What does it mean?” A panel discussion at UCT – hosted by The ACDI and the Cambridge Programme for Sustainability Leadership and Sustainable Energy Africa on 24th January 2012.
  • Earthlife Africa Johannesburg, March 2012: A review of civil society participation in the UN conference of climate change, Durban 2011.
  • Interview with Prof. Bruce Hewitson, Climate System Analysis Group (CSAG), UCT on 26th February 2012
  •, and other online resources visited during and after COP17.

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