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Climate Action 2022

It’s up to us to drive climate action through community leadership

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Phyllis Cuttino

President and CEO, the Climate Reality Project

We are closing a truly historic year for climate action. The world’s largest economy and historical polluter passed the most ambitious climate bill ever.

Australia — a major economy and coal producer — passed its own landmark legislation barely two months later. In Brazil, voters rejected a strongman with a wanton disregard for both truth and the Amazon for a president who assured the world that Brazil is back. None of these events happened by accident.

They happened because regular people — working parents, students, teachers, workers and more — were seized by the radical notion that they should have a say in their energy — and our planet’s future. They marched. They organised. They inundated their legislators with phone calls and meetings. They voted. Most of all, they refused to take ‘no’ for an answer. Because our world depended on it.

Change begins with us

Let us be clear: public opinion worldwide is overwhelmingly on our side. Even in the United States, driven by partisan divides, the historic Inflation Reduction Act passed without a single Republican vote has the backing of two-thirds of Americans. Worldwide, the numbers are much higher.

When communities come together, communities win.

Our challenge now is to turn this support into the unstoppable political force for a truly just, clean energy transition — one that will not take ‘no’ for an answer. On top of the increasing climate devastation we see across the planet, the converging energy, inflation and democracy crises unleashed by Putin’s war and our addiction to fossil fuel underscores the urgency of going all in on the energy transition. When communities come together, communities win. 

Continuing the momentum 

The tools to do it are already in our hands, as the costs of core wind and solar technologies continue to fall precipitously. Plus, with the launch of Climate TRACE, we can know the truth about greenhouse gas sources, giving us the tools to hold polluters accountable and giving nations and businesses ready to change a platform to build on.

Shaping our future cannot be a spectator sport we leave to politicians and the powerful. The good news is that all of us can get involved and make a real difference. Yes, the danger is immense — but so are the opportunities. And what comes next is up to us.

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