There’s no time to lose

You may be familiar with the idea that, if the history of earth was represented as a clock, human civilisation only appears at 5 minutes to midnight. And even within this brief timeframe, it has taken industrialised nations a fraction of a second (or, just under two centuries) to cause earth’s average surface temperature to rise to levels not seen for over 125,000 years.

The increase in earth’s average surface temperature (known as global heating) is causing measurable changes to our climate, including heatwaves increasing in frequency and severity; droughts becoming more frequent and longer lasting; changes in rainfall patterns; melting of sea ice, permafrost and glaciers; and storms, hurricanes and cyclones becoming more frequent and severe.

We must act now

Watch this video to see some of the effects of global heating of just 1.5 or 2 degrees and why it’s essential that we limit heating as much as possible.

Our Good Future Board

The climate crisis stands to impact the youngest generation most severely.

So, with young people leading climate activism all over the world, we’ve put them front and centre of our business decisions, too. Our Good Future Board is made up of six secondary school-age students who are holding us to account on our promise to protect their future.

What is the main cause of climate change?

Climate change and global heating is caused by an increase in gases such as carbon dioxide and methane in the atmosphere. These gases trap heat energy from the sun – and when too much heat is trapped, it alters the climate. Carbon dioxide is released when we burn materials that contain carbon, predominantly fossil fuels such as coal, oil and gas.

Burning these fuels releases carbon that has been locked up underground for hundreds of millions of years. And we’ve been burning them for energy at ever greater rates since the industrial revolution began almost two hundred years ago.


How can we prevent climate change from getting worse?

Energy for heat, electricity and transport is currently the world’s biggest source of carbon emissions. We must urgently stop burning fossil fuels and transition to green, renewable energy instead. In the UK, we get an increasing amount of our electricity from renewable sources like wind and solar. But we also need to speed up the transformation of how we travel and heat our homes to reduce our environmental impact.

Energy isn’t the whole picture, though. From food to clothing, the ways in which we create and consume the things we need and want is taking more from the planet than it can keep giving – and harming people and nature in the process. Making things better is a huge, complex task. But it is possible.


Climate change glossary

There are many phrases you might feel you ought to understand when it comes to climate change. Here are some of the most commonly used terms to help you to get up to speed.

Read now