We call for Coventry University to declare a climate emergency

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The staff, students, and alumni of Coventry University ask you to declare a ‘Climate Emergency’ and take urgent action to help us avert climate breakdown. Staff and students of the university have the energy and enthusiasm, and matched with expertise and resources the university could take real, meaningful action.

We would be joining the ranks of many, lending our voices and energy to a growing movement for change. The University of Bristol, Newcastle University, the Labour Party, over 50 councils throughout the country declared a climate emergency, as have many other institutions around the world.

Evidence from the IPCC’s Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C, shows that in order to avoid catastrophic climate change we must drastically reduce carbon emissions by 2030. Limiting global warming to 1.5°C is still possible but will require rapid, far-reaching, “transformational” changes without historical precedent in their scale. If we do not act now, the world as we know it will not be fit for us to work, study or live in.

Millions of young people, including our own students, are rising up and striking for the climate in their thousands. Both staff and students joined in the Extinction Rebellion protests in London, and in the monthly student strikes.

We must go beyond making our support public. We need to show leadership and to apply Coventry University’s research to real-world problems. We therefore call on you unite behind the science and:

  • declare a Climate Emergency;
  • work with staff and students to develop a Climate Emergency Plan to reduce the University’s carbon emissions and environmental footprint in line with a 1.5°C target;
  • work with suppliers as well as partners from the private, public and third sectors to help them reduce their carbon emissions in line with a 1.5°C target;
  • support the City Council in delivering a Climate Emergency Plan for the city;
  • lobby the Government to declare a Climate Emergency;
  • take ambitious steps to integrate awareness and action on climate change into both teaching and staff and student engagement.

Please join us in backing Greta Thunberg, and the young co-signatories to this letter, hopefully pressing to change the fate of humanity.