12 Climate Actions to Make an Impact

25.02.20 By
This article is more than 4 years old

Climate change is accelerating even faster than scientists expected, and we need to respond in kind: faster, and bolder. Australia is not keeping pace with the rest of the world as our strategic allies and trade partners race towards net zero economies. But the thing is, Australia has unrivalled potential for renewable energy, new clean industries, and clean jobs. So let’s get cracking!

Learn more about why emissions need to plummet this decade and what Australia’s best climate action effort could look like in our report ‘Aim High, Go Fast.

Here’s how you can use your time, money and resources to effectively fight for climate action in Australia. 

STEP 1 – Grow awareness of the urgency of the problem and educate people on the solutions  

One of the major roadblocks to climate action in Australia is that people still don’t connect the issue to their daily lives. Most Australians are genuinely concerned about climate change, but too many see it as a future or faraway threat – only affecting polar bears and low-lying islands in the Pacific.

So the first step in combating the climate change problem is to help people understand it. We need to grow awareness of what climate change is, why it’s happening, and how it affects us – personally, as well as it’s larger impacts on society, the economy and our environment. 

And critically, we need to educate people on how we can fix it. 

You see, stating that climate change will cause catastrophic extreme weather or mass extinction often scares people into ignoring the problem, and has the opposite effect on motivating people to act. Understanding the urgency of the problem is important, but we also need to communicate the path forward. We need people to know that, as scary and daunting as climate change seems, it is solvable. 

And to do that, we need to work together.

What can I do?

Infographic on climate change and bushfires

Why does this help?

Every conversation, real or virtual, that you have about climate change and climate science is strengthening our movement – because it brings diverse ideas, opinions and perspectives on board. We must create a chorus of different communities, united in asking for urgent action. 

Through a platform like Facebook, the Climate Council can communicate climate change information, solutions and the need for action, to several million people a month – people we would otherwise be unable to reach.  

This is critical, because some people haven’t seen much information on climate change before, or very rarely talk about it. If people don’t know enough about the issue, they can often feel locked out of the conversation, or be confused by false or misleading information. 

Through our regular email updates, we empower you with the facts and connect you with the resources to help you communicate the science in your day-to-day life.

We often mobilise our community to share ideas and solutions, and regularly ask for your help with spreading our fact-checking guides and myth-busting articles. This is critical when it comes to pushing back against misinformation. 

So whether it’s in the pub, supermarket, classroom, newsfeed or overcrowded train,  keep sharing and talking about the science! 

Let’s educate people on the solutions, and the urgency with which we need to act and build a stronger, more powerful and united consensus around the push for climate action in Australia. 

Why not invite 5 of your friends to follow our social media or sign up to our mailing list today?

Just remember, it’s not about telling people that they are wrong. It’s about growing awareness, and making climate science accessible to everyone.

STEP 2 – Make sustainable choices in your personal lives about things like diet, transport and money.

Below are some simple swaps you can start implementing today to help reduce your own carbon footprint. 

What actions can I take?

transport solutions graphic

Travel sustainably – Travelling uses energy and that energy has to come from somewhere, but transport produces around 19% of our annual national greenhouse gas emissions, (the equal-second-largest source of greenhouse gas pollution after electricity – in year to June 2019). By making smart travel choices where you can (like using public transport, walking, cycling or carpooling), or switching to an electric vehicle, you can significantly reduce the amount of energy you use to get around.

QLD is the sunshine state for solar

Invest in solar panels – The biggest solution to the climate crisis is to meet our energy needs with renewable energy. You can contribute to this by either purchasing accredited green-power, or by investing in solar panels on your roof. Already, 2 million Australian households are powered by the sun, and this number is expected to continue going up. Not only do solar panels slash your carbon footprint, they’ll also slash your electricity bill – with some houses generating more energy than they consume. It’s a win-win.

What difference can one person make? 

You’re more powerful than you think. Your voice, and the opinions you share, can carry real influence. 

Greta Thunberg  is the perfect example of the power of one. She started striking alone on the steps of the Swedish Parliament, and in less than 12 months, up to 7 million people took to the streets in more than 150 countries, as part of the global climate strike movement.  

While the individual choices you make daily add up to make a big difference, we also desperately need strong, national climate policy reform. But you can help influence this. 

STEP 3 – exert political and social pressure everywhere you can. 

School strike for climate action

How does emailing a politician or voting achieve climate action?

Our MPs are there to listen to the views of the public, understand your perspective, and represent you in Parliament. As one of their constituents, your opinion holds a lot of weight, because based on your vote, they could win or lose elections. The more people who contact their local MP on a given topic (e.g. climate change), the more likely they are to raise this matter in the Parliament and their party room.

Politicians also respond to public pressure, so getting involved with your local climate action group is a great way to use your voice and make sure your opinions are heard. 

Use this tool to send our pre-written email to your local Federal MP right now, or click here to download our Climate Action Toolkit for more tips on writing your own letter to your MP. 

STEP 4 – Help us unite your efforts and scale them up to a national level

Tackling the climate crisis requires leadership, strong advocacy and strategic intervention. The Climate Council is Australia’s leading climate change communications organisation. Raising awareness, educating the public, exerting political pressure – we achieve this day in, day out, but on a national scale.

We’ve been working to foster a political, economic and cultural shift in the way Australia views and acts on climate change, but there’s so much more to do. 

We need our community alongside us.

But our work is powered by our community, and less time fundraising means more time putting climate change at the top of the national conversation. 

With your regular support, we can:

Can you join thousands of other Aussies supporting climate action in Australia, by making a monthly gift?

Facebook fundraising cover photo

Thanks for taking the time to read this guide. Now, by taking these actions, you’re stepping up and leading the way.

Remember, every little bit helps. 

So keep pushing, keep using your networks, communications skills and personal power to push for climate action – whether that’s by supporting us financially, writing to your local MP to voice your concerns and making sustainable choices in your everyday lives.

As we move forward following the bushfire crisis, we must harness the power of collective action, and ramp up the fight against climate inaction.