Today is marks the final phase of COP26 in Glasgow, a truly historic moment in our lifetimes with the aim (& hope) of finally taking the decisive actions required to save our planet from ourselves. We can only hope that those in power across the world will use their position and privilege to lead our planet into a new dawn of circular economies and net zero emissions.
But can we only hope or is there something else we can do?
What is often talked about is the fear and paralysis that many of us feel in the face of such global challenges and impending disaster. We hear lots of advice about what we can do to reduce our own negative impact on the planet but with the nagging fear that it won’t be enough. On top of this, there is a feeling that if the world’s leaders don’t take action now, then anything we do is fruitless.
Rather than staring at the horror like rabbits in headlights, however, we can take hope and optimism from some of the worlds most uplifting ‘bottom up’ stories to jolt us into a place of power and action today.
Think about the way in which people gathered, collaborated and campaigned to bring to an end anything from slavery & apartheid to the banning of CFCs in our appliances and the end of the humble but destructive plastic straw.
Consumer pressure, community pressure, the way we behave and what we demand of our elected leaders as well as favourite brands has real and lasting power.
Our opinion is the oxygen of those in power.
With this in mind, I wanted to share with you some of the ways you can make an impact today including the leading role micro business can take to transform all our lives.
Small isn’t futile. Every step we take as an individual matters. The power of the collective action has power. Check the UN’s app to help you make individual choices to make a difference from the way you buy, eat and dispose of food to what you drive.
Your money is your vote. As I have already said, the money in your pocket and the opinion you hold is the oxygen that power needs. Every item we buy is a vote for what we want. If the business you buy from can’t convince you of their commitment to sustainability then walk away.
Choose small. Small and micro business makes up a whopping 96% of all UK private business. Their very size can make them more transparent and easier to understand. If you have questions about supply chains, renewable energy use, waste policies or packaging then go to the largest business sector in the UK first.
Share your actions. The power of social media is huge and we are the only users. Together we can share our positive actions to race to net zero and our voices can be amplified.
Do better business. If you are a business owner, there are multiple ways to gain accreditation or show your commitment to the race to net zero. You have power and your customs will love it. Visit organisations like The Environmental Quality mark or pledge here.