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Why we're tackling climate change

We know climate change is happening, and we know that it is caused by our actions.

The Earth's atmosphere is warming, faster than it probably ever has. In some cases weather patterns, climates and natural environments are changing quicker than wildlife or people can adapt.

So many of the world's biggest challenges, from poverty to wildlife extinction, are made more difficult by climate change. And things will get worse if we do nothing. But we can do something about it.

We have the knowledge and the technology to reduce our impact on the climate, and ease the pressures on the world's most vulnerable places, people and wildlife. We just need to make it happen.


Climate change won’t just disappear

We know climate change is happening. Global temperatures have been rising for over a century, speeding up in the last few years, and are now the highest on record. This causes negative impacts such as the melting of Arctic sea-ice, prolonged heat-waves and rising sea-levels.

We know why. We release carbon dioxide into the atmosphere by burning fossil fuels for energy, farming, and destroying forests. These carbon emissions are causing the greenhouse effect, trapping heat and making the Earth warmer, faster than could happen naturally.

We know what needs to be done about it. We need to cut man-made greenhouse gas emissions drastically, phase out fossil fuels and move to renewable energy. We need to use less energy and be more efficient in the energy that we do use, and we need to tackle deforestation and eat less meat.

We're working with government bring forward policies to reduce UK emissions in line with international targets and with businesses to reduce their impact and emissions. We're working to increase renewable energy use, including offshore wind farms particularly around the Scottish coast and on international policy to limit emissions from the aviation industry.

Take our footprint calculator The effects of climate change