What you need to know about climate change — and how we can stop it
Anyone can tell that the weather is getting wilder and affecting us all. From floods in the UK to droughts, storms and sea-level rise displacing millions of the world's poorest people. Climate change is happening now.
Yet there are clear signs of hope.
The tide is turning faster than many politicians realise — as more and more people join together to take action.
Hope in the fight against climate change
The switch to renewable energy is happening at breathtaking speed.
A global movement of ordinary people is achieving extraordinary things in the fight to protect our planet.
And almost every country in the world has committed to limit global warming — by signing the 2015 Paris climate agreement.
Now the world needs a clear plan to reach that goal.
Who does climate change affect?
Climate change is devastating people's lives all over the world. With drought, storms, floods, crop damage and sea-level rise, millions are fleeing their homes. And it's the world’s poorest who are hardest hit.
The UN Refugee Agency says climate change adds to many of today’s conflicts — from Darfur to Somalia to Iraq and Syria.
The effects will get worse as temperatures rise further. So we must cut greenhouse gas emissions to stop temperatures rising.
People also need protection from the climate change we can no longer avoid. That means financial support for developing countries and legal protection for climate refugees.
What causes climate change?
Our planet is warmer now than at any point in the past 800,000 years, and heating fast. This is mainly a result of the huge increase in the amount of coal, oil and gas we’ve been burning since the industrial revolution, pumping greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
Other things contribute too, such as deforestation, which means trees absorb less of these gases; and other greenhouse gases such as methane from cows.
Ditch dirty fuels
We must act fast to stop burning coal, oil and gas — fossil fuels that heat the atmosphere. Otherwise, the climate will become too extreme to provide a safe home for billions of people or for our beautiful natural world.
Curb transport emissions
Transport is a massive contributor to greenhouse gas emissions. We need urgent action to slash pollution from roads and aviation.
Find out why building a third runway at Heathrow airport flies in the face of action to limit climate chaos and improve air quality.