Going Underground?

In stark contrast to the brief flash of publicity generated by the 10:10 campaign’s short film “No Pressure”, the 10/10/10 “global work party” day of action for the 350.org campaign appears to have been subjected to a total news blackout.

According to the organisers, over 7,000 events were held worldwide, in over 180 separate countries. This would very likely make it the biggest global campaign ever. And yet, in the mainstream media there was not a peep about it.

Is this a deliberately concerted policy on the part of the media? There has been a recent suggestion that the BBC has decided to stop reporting stories about climate change:-


Maybe it has been decided that the world economic crisis is the story of the day, that people are bored with hearing about climate change and that the forthcoming energy crisis will make it necessary for us to burn whatever we can get our hands on that will burn. Who knows? But it seems fairly obvious that for the moment at least, the mainstream media does not see any value in reporting stories about climate change, or the growing strength of the global grass-roots movement to stop it.

No Pressure

With the release and subsequent withdrawal of the 10:10 climate change campaign’s controversial “No Pressure” short film written by Richard Curtis, I wonder whether 2010 will turn out to be a kind of tipping point for climate change activism.

In the despondency of post-Copenhagen failure for the world to agree a concerted approach to tackling the problem, it’s easy for climate activists to become increasingly radicalised in our approach to getting the urgency of the issue ‘out there’.

I think in private there is a lot of agreement amongst frustrated activists, who understand the sentiments expressed in the film, which is obviously just meant to be over-the-top funny with a serious point, in the Monty Python style tradition.

But coming as it does towards the end of a year which has seen heatwaves and wildfires in Russia, floods and landslides right across China, Pakistan and India, with around a third of Pakistan under the floodwaters, and huge quantities of crops destroyed, I really wonder whether 2010 will actually be remembered as the year when the pressure to act on climate change really started to become obvious to even the most hardened sceptics.

It has now got to the stage where climate change scepticism has started to sound less like a perfectly reasonable questioning of the situation, and more like obstructionism in the face of an urgent need to take swift, concerted and decisive action.

I wonder if the 10:10 film would have been more effective if it had shown the majority of people being blown up, leaving only those who have been prepared to make the sacrifices and put in the work to get on with the task.

Still, we live in hope that people are slowly but surely catching on. It’s either that or extinction.