The IPCC's latest report couldn't be clearer: time is fast running out for us to avoid the worst of climate change. But for WorkForClimate director Lucy Piper, this isn't the time for employees to bury their heads in the sand and wait for someone else to fix things. It's time for us to be emboldened to take the climate fight to our employers.
The third section of the latest IPCC report landed today, and if the message wasn’t already clear enough from previous findings: catastrophic and irreversible climate instability is imminent unless we act now.
This report is hard to engage with if you are someone who works outside of policy, energy or the climate and environmental space. But that’s the exact challenge that we must address. Corporations are critical to the energy transformation that needs to take place, but they are not acting fast enough.
“Current climate pledges would mean a 14% increase in emissions and most major emitters are not taking the steps needed to fulfil even these inadequate promises” Antonio Guterres, (UN Secretary General) said earlier today at the IPCC press conference, and “First and foremost we must triple the speed of the shift to renewable energy”.
That rapid acceleration to renewable energy is something that the corporate sector must take responsibility for, and employees are key to making it happen. They are the talent, the engine behind organisations, and they need to engage with this challenge as much as politicians and corporate leaders are. Staff and professionals around the world who are feeling helpless in the face of this report should take this as an opportunity to get vocal and take the lead within their organisations.
There are clear pathways for corporations to make the switch to renewable energy and rapidly reduce emissions. Right now, businesses are stalling for time. And employees are being gaslit by distant net zero targets, and being tricked into believing that everything is under control. The market is not going to save us.
Employees are the ones who can – and must – step up and refuse to be complicit in corporate greenwash. We work with employees every day who are taking the lead inside of their organisations to figure out the fastest and most feasible way for their company to switch to renewable energy and reduce emissions. And the most inspiring thing is seeing the impact that comes from a single person who sets out to make a small change, and who ends up shifting an entire company.
Today, we need every employee who reads this report, and who deeply feels the grief for our future, to join the movement of professionals who refuse to be complicit, and who are accelerating the transition from the inside.
You don't have to be a climate scientist or a sustainability expert to make impactful change. Explore WorkForClimate's range of playbooks and cohorts to help give you the tools and resources you need to become a climate leader at work.