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Climate Emergency Clock
Photograph: Ben Wolf

This Climate Clock shows how long we’ve got to save the world

Its creators are asking us all to mark the world’s first Climate Emergency Day

Sophie Dickinson
Written by
Sophie Dickinson

You’ve probably seen the heat and wildfires ravaging mainland Europe, and the extreme heatwave in the UK earlier this week. It got a lot of us thinking about, y’know, the oncoming climate apocalypse. And, (sort of) coincidentally, today is being marked as the world’s first Climate Emergency Day.

What does that mean exactly? Well, you’ve probably seen the rather haunting-looking Climate Clock in New York before, marking how long we have left to keep global warming below 1.5C. Today, at noon NYC time (that’s 5pm in the UK), that ticks over to just six years. The group behind the clock are asking us all to observe a minute of silence, and use this time to ‘make a commitment to those you care about what you will do in the next year to defend people and planet.’

This is going to coincide with a number of digital and IRL events, including a gathering at the clock itself and climate conferences in Nigeria and Ghana. The Design Museum in London have been tasked with ‘digitally capturing’ the moment the clock ticks over. Founder Gan Golan is using the event to ‘demand our leaders seek sustainable solutions: invest in renewable energy, honour Indigenous land sovereignty, and commit to the Green Climate Fund.’

People are also encouraged to make personal climate resolutions, which you can find guidance about in this official guide. And if you’re looking to create your own event to mark the (pretty scary) moment the clock hits six years, they’ve got resources for that, too.

Hey, you haven’t got any cheerier plans this Friday, right?

Looking for some positive eco news? Here are 21 amazing things cities are doing to fight the climate crisis

Plus: these are the most sustainable cities in the world right now

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