Climate change: Your guidei to inspiring action

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Climate change: Your guidei to inspiring action

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Climate change is one of the most urgent issues of our time. It is the greatest environmental challenge we face today as a global community. Photo: Flooding in Boscastle, Cornwall, 2004 An indication of the type of event that scientists say will become more frequent in the future. .Given the enormity of the problem of climate change and its consequences – heatwaves, flooding, more frequent storms – people may find it hard to believe that they can do anything to help. But the fact is, man-made greenhouse gases contribute significantly to climate change, and action from individuals, government and businesses is vital...

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  1. Climate change: Your guidei to inspiring actioni
  2. Climate change is one of the most urgent issues of our time. It is the greatest environmental challenge we face today as a global community. Photo: Flooding in Boscastle, Cornwall, 2004 An indication of the type of event that scientists say will become more frequent in the future.
  3. Given the enormity of the problem of This booklet is intended to help raise climate change and its consequences awareness of climate change and – heatwaves, flooding, more frequent encourage and inspire local action. storms – people may find it hard to It is also designed to act as a believe that they can do anything to help. communications tool, showing you But the fact is, man-made greenhouse how to spread the message and gases contribute significantly to climate generate discussion on what to do. change, and action from individuals, You can use this booklet in conjunction government and businesses is vital if we with the accompanying website, are to put the brakes on it. If we all make, some simple changes, our collective which contains further information, effort will help make a difference. ideas and resources. The weight of evidence for climate change, and the i link withigreenhouse gas emissions, most notably i carbon dioxide,iis in my view now unarguable. This is i a globaliproblem requiring a global solution, but we i can all help to makeia difference. If we reduce the amount i of energy we use andimake our energy consumption i more efficient, we will reduceithe impact that we, i as individuals, have on the environment. i Sir David King, UK Government’s Chief Scientific Adviser Contents 02–03 What is climate change? 04–05 On the ground 06–07 Getting the point across 08–09 Your carbon footprint 10–11 Calculating your carbon footprint 12–13 Figuring out climate change 14–15 Communicating climate change 16–17 Do you know who you’re talking to? 18–19 Other climate change resources 20–21 Next steps 01
  4. What is climate change?i Our planet is surrounded by a blanket ‘the greenhouse effect’, so called because of gases. This blanket keeps the surface it works in much the same way as a of the Earth warm and enables it to garden greenhouse – by trapping heat sustain life. This process is known as from the sun. Here’s what happens: The greenhouse effect 1. Energy from the sun enters 1 our atmosphere, passing through the blanket of gases that surround the Earth. 3 2. As it reaches the Earth’s surface, much of the sun’s energy is absorbed 2 by our planet’s land, water and biosphere. 3. Some of this energy is radiated back into space. 4 4. The rest of the energy is trapped in our atmosphere – and this is known as ‘the greenhouse effect’. Climate change timeline Home, work and travel What are the major historical developments 1801 Richard Trevithick that have contributed to the climate change invents first steam- story? We’ve tracked a few powered locomotive key dates and events under three separate headings: Home, work and travel Industry and technology 1492 Geo-political Da Vinci theorises about flying machines
  5. So what’s the problem? The problem now is that this natural cycle Over the last hundred years or so, can’t keep up. Through the burning of this blanket has become thicker fossil fuels, we’re creating a build-up because of the release of ‘greenhouse of CO2 in the atmosphere. This build-up gases’ into the atmosphere through is a major factor in increasing the the burning of fossil fuels. The thicker greenhouse effect, which is one of the blanket traps more energy causing main causes of climate change. the Earth’s temperature to rise. What’s more, our everyday energy use Carbon dioxide (CO2) is the most is adding to this build-up of CO2. More important of the six greenhouse gases. than 40% of CO2 emissions are the direct Carbon (in combination with other result of actions taken by individuals. Every elements) makes up the basis of life time we use non-renewable electricity, on Earth. Forests, soils, oceans and the drive a car or take a flight, we’re producing atmosphere all absorb and release CO2. CO2, as all of these actions largely depend The movement of carbon between these on fossil fuels. And every tonne we emit sources is known as ‘the carbon cycle’. commits the world to more warming. For more information on the carbon cycle, take a look at The Carbon Cycle That’s why it’s up to us all to do animation included in this pack. something about it. Now. Photo: Traffic, UK Road transport now accounts for a fifth of the UK’s entire national carbon emissions. 1879 1903 Invention of the Wright brothers electric lightbulb make their first flight 1885 1894 Karl Benz British firm 1908 builds world’s Crompton & Co. Henry Ford improves first practical features electric the assembly line for automobile kettles in its catalogue automobile production 02/03
  6. On the groundi North East Climate change is big news. Increasing media coverage has helped raise awareness of local and global issues and has sparked action around Project: The Experiential Climate Dome the country. Organisation: Carbon Neutral North East Using a ‘climate dome’ at a variety of locations Individuals, schools, community across the North East, this project is aimed at groups, NGOs, businesses and highlighting the immediate impact of climate change. The dome includes interactive the government are now all involved screens, games and communications materials in projects to tackle the causes that are easily adapted to the needs of different audiences. of climate change. In 2006, 83 Climate Change Fund West Midlands (CCF) projects were selected to receive funding from Defra to help spread the word on climate change and encourage others to get involved. Go to and click on ‘What’s being done’ to find out more about projects in Project: Marches Cinema Short Film your region. Organisation: The Rural Media Company Costa del Marches, a short film about climate change, was created for screening throughout the rural West Midlands. Working with partners Marches Energy Agency and Flicks in the Sticks, the project team is increasing awareness and discussion of climate change issues in rural communities. 1931 1952 Surveys of potential First regular jet commercial air routes from airline service the US to the Orient via Canada, Alaska and Russia 1939 1958 First trans-Atlantic More than 1million passengers 1913 passenger service 1951 fly across the Atlantic, Invention of the flown by Pan American 1.5 million surpassing steamship electric refrigerator Airways TV sets in US passengers for the first time
  7. Yorkshire and The Humber East of England Project: Climate Change – Together we can beat it! Organisation: Bradford Metropolitan District Council This project aims to inform, educate and raise awareness of climate change through a targeted marketing campaign. Press ads, billboards and events encourage the community to see climate change as a local Project: On target for carbon issue and to take simple steps to help. neutral football Organisation: Ipswich Borough Council Targeting Ipswich Town Football Club’s strong fan base, this project communicates climate change through press, radio and football programmes. Fans were encouraged to reduce their carbon emissions, and the campaign culminated in the UK’s first carbon neutral football match. All England Project: Asian Voice newspaper Organisation: Cambridge Carbon Footprint Asian Voice, a widely read and well-trusted newspaper, agreed to include a regular column on climate change. Written by a member of Cambridge Carbon Footprint, the column helps raise awareness of environmental issues among the UK’s Asian community. Other regional CCF projects. There are another 22 projects that cover the whole of England. 1971 2006 Boeing 747 makes its UK Government announces first commercial flight from ambition to make all new New York to London homes ‘zero-carbon’ by 2016 2004 1974 1997 Carbon emissions from First domestic food EU deregulation of the housing account for 27% processor introduced air industry in Europe; of all the UK’s carbon in the UK low-cost air travel begins dioxide emissions 04/05
  8. Getting thei point acrossi Because everyone needs to take responsibility for climate change, everyone needs to know about it. That’s why it’s important for people not only to think about it, but to get involved. In 2006, Defra ran a competition to find nine Climate Change Champions aged 10 to 18 from across England. The Champions have been busy tackling climate change and will be in office until autumn 2007. The Champions are making a big difference. Find out more about what Aazim, Carri, David, Jordan, Lucy, Sarah, Sofia, Stephanie and Zoheb are doing at You can see short films and read their Photo: Gurschen Glacier, blogs and news articles about how they are Switzerland spreading the word about climate change. The Champions saw first hand the effects of climate change on this Swiss glacier. They are pictured here marking the position of the glacier’s lower limit during the year they were born. Industry and technology 1821 1882 First electric motor The Electric Lighting Act allows setting up of supply systems by persons, companies or local authorities 1879 c. 1800 1806 Karl Benz granted a Beginning of Invention of the internal patent for his internal 04/05industrial revolution combustion engine two-stroke gas engine
  9. We are the Champions! Aazim Ihsan London Carri Swann Sarah Crudgington East Midlands East of England David Saddington Stephanie Lynch North East North West Jordan Stephens Sofia Selska South East West Midlands Lucy Stansfield Zoheb Khalil South West Yorkshire and The Humber 1884 1896 Invention of the Svante Arrhenius proposes steam turbine a link between fossil fuels, carbon dioxide and global warming 1892 1924 Rudolf Diesel develops Based on 1920 coal use, the Carnot heat engine, prediction made that industrial a motor burning activity will double atmospheric powdered coal dust carbon dioxide in 500 years 06/07
  10. Your carboni footprinti Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions are The total amount of CO2 generated caused in part as a direct result of by these activities is normally our everyday activities. The following measured in tonnes. all result in CO2 being emitted into the atmosphere: On average, each household in the UK directly produces about 10 tonnes • burning fuel to heat our homes of carbon dioxide every year. • using electricity to power our lights and appliances We also contribute CO2 to the atmosphere indirectly through • using fuel to power the manufacture, distribution and our vehicles. disposal of the products we consume, including food. 1951 Britain’s first commercial computer, the Lyons Electronic Office, is built 1938 1950s 1969 UK National Grid Aerospace industry Astronauts first walk 04/05 integrated becomes develops on the moon
  11. 40% of the average household’s The CO2 produced as a result of the actions of an individual, a household or an organisation is sometimes referred carbon footprint comes from personal transport, to as a ‘carbon footprint’. i.e. cars, motorbikes and flights.* Our footprints add up. The UK as a whole emitted 554 million tonnes of carbon dioxide in 2005. If we all tread lightly and minimise our footprints, our collective impact on the environment will be significantly reduced. In this way, we can all contribute to tackling climate change. 60% of the average household’s The CO2 carbon footprint comes emissions from the from home heating, home come from: lighting and appliance use.* 75% water and space heating, and lighting 25% use of appliances. * These are approximate values based on the underlying data used in the Act on CO2 calculator, see page 10. 1980s 2001 Rapid industrial development Nearly two-thirds of begins in China – pace set for people in the UK next 20 years unprecedented (33 million people) in human history now use the internet 1991 World Wide Web released to the public 08/09
  12. Calculating youriii Close your curtains at night It stops heat escaping through carbonifootprinti your windows. You can now work out how big your Turn your heating thermostat down by 1ºC carbon footprint is by using the It could save you 10% in Government’s Act On CO2 calculator heating bills. Generally, a comfortable living room at temperature is around 21ºC, while the bedroom should be comfortable at 16–18ºC. The calculator focuses on the three most significant areas where our actions lead directly to CO2 emissions: • household heating, hot water and lighting • appliances and gadgets • personal transport. The calculator will ask you for information about each of these areas and will then work out your individual and/or household footprints. It also gives you a personalised Once you’ve action plan to help you reduce your calculated your carbon footprint, which you can then save own carbon dioxide and return to later. footprint, you can work out ways to reduce it. It’s easier Turn gadg Don’t leave than you think. Here mobile pho are some ideas to and games when not in get you started. Geo-political 1950s Dramatic increase in carbon dioxide emissions 1827 Jean Baptiste Fourier proposes the existence of an earth- warming atmospheric effect. 1900 The term ‘greenhouse effect’ World population 04/05is first used stands at 1.6 billion
  13. Wash laundry at 30ºC Only fill the kettle with Selecting the 30ºC cycle cuts the water you need electricity use by up to 40%, You waste energy if you boil compared with washing clothes more water than necessary. at higher temperatures. Buy energy-efficient appliances Look for fridges, freezers and washing machines with the Energy Saving Recommended logo and save money and energy. Insulate your loft Install Energy Saving You can typically save 0.4 Recommended lightbulbs tonnes of CO2 a year, and They last between 8 and 15 times nearly 10% on your heating bill. longer than traditional bulbs. If you can, try alternatives to the car for short journeys Walking, cycling or using public transport will help reduce your carbon footprint. gets off e gadgets – such as TVs, one chargers, computers s consoles – on standby in use. 1975 1984 World population The Alliance of Small Island reaches 4 billion States (many of whom fear they will disappear as sea levels rise) demand a 20% emissions cut by 2005 1957 Start of long-term carbon 1979 dioxide monitoring by US World Climate Conference scientist David Keeling; recognises the importance year-on-year rise seen of climate change 10/11
  14. Figuring outi climate changei of young people When you are making a communication believe that the world’s plan, one of the first steps is to climate is changing. understand what people think about climate change now. Defra has been tracking public of adults awareness and understanding of think that the Government can climate change. To find out more, go to influence climate change. and look at ‘What do people think?’ in the ‘Communicate climate change’ section. Here are some of the latest statistics: of adults said that they are already taking some action. Almost of young people study climate change at school, and of young people feel that of adults think that they should spend more climate change is time learning about it. caused by human behaviour. 1987 1990 Discovery of link between IPCC’s first report states atmospheric carbon dioxide that the average world levels and temperature, going back temperature has increased more than 100,000 years by 0.5°C since the beginning of the 20th century 1988 1985 Intergovernmental Panel First major international on Climate Change conference on the (IPCC) is set up by the greenhouse effect is World Meteorological 04/05 Austria held in Organization
  15. of adults have heard of climate change. young people say of adults think that that they could use recent warmer weather is less energy at home. part of climate change. Just of adults say that they could help by driving less or not driving at all. thought so in of adults March 2006. and of young people think that they can personally have a big influence on climate change. of young people think that the world is affected by climate change; a third think that it will become affected in the next two decades. Source: Adult research conducted by ICM for Defra among a representative sample of approximately 3,100 adults in the UK. Four waves were conducted six-monthly from March 2005. All figures are taken from the March 2007 research unless otherwise stated. Research on young people conducted by LVQ among a representative sample of approximately 750 11–17-year-olds in England in May 2006. 1997 Kyoto Protocol agrees to binding cuts in emissions for industrialised nations to be met between 2008 and 2012 1992 Climate Change Convention 1990 signed in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, World population by 154 nations, sets initial reaches 5.26 billion emissions reduction targets 12/13
  16. Communicatingi climate changei Let’s talk about it Messages Create some simple To encourage people to make a messages. Would they work better difference you need to get the in a press release, in a report or message out. on a website? Think about what your audience Tone of voice If you’re speaking needs to know and how they might in public, it helps to use one style of be able to change their actions language; if you’re writing a press in simple ways that will help the release, it helps to use another. environment. The clearer you can Partners If you can link your be about what you want them to do, message to another issue, you might the better. be able to share resources. You know your audience best – what Timing Your message might be are they most likely to respond to? effective, but if your email gets Creating a communications delivered when everyone’s too busy plan Consider the following with other things, it won’t be read. ideas when planning your communications: 1998 2003 Hottest year on record Temperature in the UK exceeds in the hottest decade 37.8°C (100°F) for the first time. on record Over 2,000 deaths that summer are attributed to the hot weather 2003 Third hottest year on record globally. Hottest summer for at least 500 years in Europe, where 35,000 deaths are attributed to the heatwave; direct link 04/05 made with climate change
  17. Budget You’ve got a clear idea Here are some examples: of how much money you’ve got, • Traditional media – and what it will buy. There are newspapers, radio stations, ways of getting information into TV stations, magazines newspapers and magazines for free. For example, you could use a press • Events – speeches, release or an article instead of an ad. conferences, forums Ask the audience what they • New media – websites, think Did it work for them? email, text messages Did they understand what you • Partnership marketing were trying to say? Did it make a – promotions, sponsorship, difference? All of this information is special offers valuable for your next campaign. • Internal communications Choosing the right channel There – reports, brochures, are thousands of different ways to newsletters communicate your message, but it’s important to use those that will be • Direct marketing – most effective for you. direct mail, cold calling 2005 Kyoto Protocol comes into force 2005 2005 G8 Gleneagles Summit; Hurricane Katrina devastates New Orleans; climate change one researchers link record US hurricane season of two main issues and melting sea ice and Siberian permafrost addressed to climate change 14/15
  18. Do you know whoi you’re talking to?i If you are going to communicate some of If you’d like to find out more about the issues surrounding climate change what people in the UK think about and encourage people to adapt some of climate change, to help you understand their behaviours, you need to find out: how to target them, go to the ‘Communicating climate change’ section • who they are (socio-demographics) at • what they do (current behaviours) Here are some examples of how different • how they think and feel (their attitudes). people might feel about being more environmentally friendly: By thinking about your audience in this way, you will often find that you have more information about them than you thought. It helps you to work out what people will be prepared to do, as well as the Waste not, want not –i most effective messages and it’s important to live lifei communication channels. thinking about whati you’re doing and using.i For example, Defra is undertaking research to develop an environmental segmentation model informed by people’s attitudes, values and current environmental behaviours. 2006 2007 The Stern Review is published. It’s the IPCC confirms that there is a first report of its kind into the economic greater than 90% chance that impact of the climate change. global warming over the last The costs of inaction far outweigh the 50 years is due to man costs of action now 2006 Al Gore, former US Vice President, wins an Oscar for the film An Inconvenient Truth, which issues 04/05 a warning about climate change
  19. You should do everythingi you caniwithin thei constraints of modern living.i I do my bit and that’s enough.i I don’t see others doingi much more than me.i I think it’s importantii that I doieverythingi I know I should do more, but at thei I can to helpi moment I can’t…and I don’t do muchi the environment.i to cause damage anyway. I’ll do moreii when I have more money or time.i If it saves me money,i then it’siworth doing buti otherwiseiI can’tireallyi To be honest, I don’ti do much.i really thinkiaboutii the environment.i 2007 IPCC reports that the planet has warmed 0.74°C since the beginning of the 20th century 2007 2007 For the first time, half of Draft Climate Change the world’s population Bill published by the lives in cities UK Government 16/17
  20. Other climate changei resourcesi Partly as a result of unpredictable and unseasonal weather, the issue of climate change has become a major focus for public attention. Other factors involved in this increased awareness include the following: • Scientific reports have been published, based on the work of some of the world’s top scientists. These show that the problem is real and that man is largely responsible. • Politicians from all of the UK’s main parties have broadly agreed that climate change poses a serious threat and that action needs to be taken now.
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