Rupert Read is a professor of the University of East Anglia in Norwich, UK, and the author of several books. In this article he argues that our political leaders can’t be relied upon to deliver at COP26, and inevitably change will be up to the people.
Writings from 2021
Prof Rupert Read from the University of East Anglia will attend the 26th climate ‘COP’ in Glasgow knowing it’s almost certain to fail us but hopeful that its failure will provide something even more necessary - a massive wakeup call for humanity.
Rupert Read reflects on Insulate Britain’s M25 protests, encouraging the group to shift towards a more positive strategy in order to gain public support.
If humanity is to escape unmitigated catastrophe, mass climate action is needed. Our power lies in our shared values
"Imagine electoral politics not just affected by the agenda-shifting caused by the radical flank, but materially-altered by the presence inside it of a growing ‘moderate’ flank." Rupert Read and Laura Baldwin explore the need for a ‘moderate flank’ in climate activism, as exemplified by the Greens Climate Activist Network (GreensCAN).
The UK Government recently carried out a consultation on its Statement of Environmental Principles. The Statement will have legal status through being referred to in the Environment Bill, still slowly making its way through Parliament and now in the House of Lords. This Bill is supposed to repair the damage done by Brexit pulling the UK out of the shared EU arrangements for environmental protection.
For more than a generation of economic globalisation, to turn the old adage on its head, it seemed to many that “wealth is health”. In the bargain, as everything, including health, came seemingly to rest on the willing shoulders of money, huge fortunes were not only made but universally sought, in what has come to be called an “aspirational world”.
Whereas there was a period at the start of the year where some ‘climate experts’ were criticising some of us for discussing how to prepare for or soften potential societal breakdown due to environmental strains, the return of rapid rises in carbon emissions after last year’s Covid stutter means that more scientists are beginning to consider the implications of a failure to meet climate targets. That painful reflection is still mostly done in private. With this book we are helping them explore what it could mean to prepare for failure.