Report concludes: ‘Act now on climate change or else ...’

The IPCC report has been in the press a lot in recent weeks. It’s a report from the UN’S Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

The panel is made up of the world’s leading scientists on climate and the environment and took eight years to compile.

It’s basically the most accurate and up-to-date report on the impact we’re having on the planet and while there’s bad news in there, there’s also some good.

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There are plenty of findings in the nearly 3,000-page report but they basically all lead to the same conclusion – we have to act right now, or it will be too late.

The more pollution we produce, the more climate change will accelerate and the more damage and destruction will happen.

What the report says loud and clear is that the longer we delay going green, the worse global warming is going to get.

It’s a bit like a runaway train, it’s much easier for us all to change lots of small habits now which will make big difference rather than us all having to make seismic changes when things have got really bad further down the line.

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Every tonne of carbon pollution we can save is absolutely worth it and we’re definitely heading in the right direction, we just need to head there a lot faster and with a bit more drive and urgency.

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On the bright side, solar and wind prices are coming down and electric car sales going up.

Those are two seismic changes that are just going to accelerate as more of the world looks to affordable renewable energy instead of burning oil and gas.

We, consumers are becoming more climate aware and making viable environmental choices when it comes to purchasing big things like cars and solar panels for homes and small things like a plant-based lunch.

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We must get used to extreme weather happening. The ship on stopping climate change sailed decades ago, but how bad it gets comes down to what changes we make now.

The chairperson of the IPCC, Hoesung Lee, says it’s possible to stay within the 1.5-degree climate temperature rise we hear so much about but that window is fast closing,

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"This synthesis report underscores the urgency of taking more ambitious action and shows that, if we act now, we can still secure a liveable sustainable future for all,” he said.

So while the report has gained a lot of traction because of the messages and how incredibly thorough it is, it’s not all doom and gloom there’s agreement among governments and businesses are responding.

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There is also growingnumber of citizens who are making choices with the climate in mind constantly, we just need to accelerate these intentions and slow the runaway train.

Celebrity spot

Singer Ellie Goulding tweeted about the IPCC report calling her millions of followers to action: the best scientists from across the globe have come together to tell us what to do to turn this around.

Our mission is clear, act now and the prize is a future on a restored planet earth.

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The solutions are here. Our job is to deploy them. We have global treaties on nature and plastic, we have the best set of young climate activists the world has ever known so instead of climate tears.

Let’s act now.

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Green swap

Why not swap everyday kitchen items that aren’t easily recycled or composted for kitchen reusables. If you’re a fan of foil, buy silicone baking mats, they wash and work in the same way. If the kids love cupcakes, ditch paper liners for reusable silicone ones.

​It’s time for return of ‘let train take the strain’

Sleeper trains used to be a favoured way to travel for a lot of people in the UK. They were the perfect way to get where you needed to be, avoid hotel costs and get a good night’s shut-eye at the same time.

In the 80s, it was even possible to drive your car on to a train at certain stations and have it travel with you while you slept.

While mainland Europe still has plenty of sleeper routes and is introducing more this year and next year, there are now only two in the UK, London to Scotland – both the Highlands and Edinburgh and Glasgow and London to Penzance in Cornwall.

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Isn’t it time we reintroduced sleeper trains across the UK to make our coastal towns and cities more accessible for holiday makers without jamming up single-track roads across the country?

Train travel is one of the most eco-friendly ways to travel and maybe it’s time we ditched the motorways for our annual getaways and went back onto trains.

Cabins are comfortable with pull-down bunks, lots of services let you on hours before the train departs so you can get comfortable, and food is on offer on the service too.

Trains contribute just 1.4 percent to the UKs travel carbon emissions not to mention that emissions per km of train travel can be 80 percent less than in cars,

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By letting the train take the strain you do good for the planet. You get a good sleep and when you wake up, you’re ready to start your holiday.

What’s not to love?

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If you travel further afield too, the trains in Europe run on electric tracks which makes them even more environmentally friendly than their diesel fuel-burning UK counterparts.

Seat 61 is a website and social media account with tonnes of fantastic info on train travel.

Find out at

One of the newer services to launch in Europe travels the 502 miles between the capital of Sweden, Stockholm, and Hamburg in Germany.

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Flying the distance results in around 250kg of carbon dioxide emissions per passenger, the C02 released by travelling via the electric-powered train is just 26kg.

Fares in Europe are arguably more affordable than the UK.

A UK study found train fares can be 50 percent more expensive than flying, so for people who want to help the environment but have to be mindful of their wallets, their hands are tied when it comes to travelling.

Holidays are about so much more than just arriving.

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Wouldn’t it be lovely if we could holiday from our local train station, be rocked to sleep by a train, get a full night’s sleep and arrive refreshed, ready to start a holiday, secure and safe in the knowledge your travel choice has helped the planet too?

Fact or fiction

Is it a well-known fact that 10,000 trees a day are felled to make toilet paper? It is fiction. The truth is it’s more than double that number and continually growing. Globally around 27,000 trees are felled every single day just to make toilet paper.

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