Environmental challenges can seem overwhelming and your own personal actions can seem dwarfed when others do not take similar action.
At Planet Aware we believe finding ways to influence others is as important as making personal changes. Never underestimate the power of even the briefest of conversations to start a ripple of change. If you can try and find some common ground with the person you are talking to. What do they care about? What matters to them?
You might not agree with their view but start every conversation with a respect for the other person. Being informed is important – but stories have much more of an influence on changing people’s views than facts. If you have recently taken an action to make an environmental change explain what it is and why it matters to you. Talking Climate from Climate Outreach is a great resource to starting conversations around climate change.
Carbon Brief reports on the issues around climate change. If you like to listen to your information Costing the Earth on BBC Sounds provides half hour look at some current environmental debates from Fast Fashion to Ghost Gear.
If you want to make personal changes in your life but not sure where to start we recommend Sustainablish by Jen Gale.
Make your voice heard
Everyone has a right to live in a safe and clean environment. And you have a right to be heard by the people who run our local and national governments. You can start by writing to them about how your concerns. Here are some pointers to get you started.
- Do your research: find out who is responsible for your issue – it it the local council, the government or someone else. www.parliament.uk covers this in detail.
- Keep your issue local – even if you are writing about the climate emergency you can still talk about its impacts locally such as flooding.
- Keep it short and stay polite.
- Tell your story – why does this issue matter to you?
- Ask the person you are contacting to take a specific action – this could be anything from talking to someone in charge or making a personal change.
- Ask them for a reply or an update on their action. (You can follow up too).
And while letters are good sometimes a picture, a photo, a video or even something that you have made that explain the story that you would like to tell have an even bigger impact!
Planet Aware’s My Planet My Voice campaign enable individuals to use creative ways of expressing their environmental concerns. Get in touch to find out how we can work with you.