popcawn - Vote for the Climate! March 2024

popcawn  - Vote for the Climate! March 2024
Photo by Element5 Digital on Unsplash

Last month’s popcawn topic was people power and how we can find comfort and strength in numbers. Nowhere is people power seen more clearly than when we cast a vote to elect our political representatives. We may wonder what difference our one single vote could make among tens of thousands in our constituency, especially in ‘safe’ seats where the incumbent is actively voting against environmental protection policies. But recent by-election results have shown that we can elicit change…and with the General Election to take place within the year, potentially as soon as May, we have a huge opportunity to influence national climate action.

So who should we vote for? CA-WN always has been and always will be an apolitical organisation and so will not make any recommendations on who to vote for. However, here is some guidance and links to resources to help you make your decision.

First of all, while we wait for the publication of 2024 manifestos, look at all parties’ promises/pledges/plans and judge from the information and the language used whether they truly understand the risks and urgency of climate change and biodiversity loss. Does what they say about environmental protection tally up with how they talk about it when interviewed? And does it align with what they’ve actually been doing if they have been in power? What other policies do they have that may conflict with climate policies? For example, the pursuit of economic growth is something that needs to be balanced carefully with slowing down climate change. On the other hand, tackling the cost of living crisis through home insulation initiatives, and energy security through investment in UK clean energy, will generally have the co-benefit of reducing emissions.

To help you understand what our next government should be doing to keep us safe in the coming years (ie what government policy should be) the Climate Change Committee (CCC) is a valuable resource. The CCC is an independent statutory body established under the Climate Change Act 2008 to advise the UK on emissions targets and there is a useful summary of its key recommendations on its website1.

If a party currently has sitting MPs, you can look at their voting record on climate and nature issues, which will give you a sense of how seriously they take climate change and biodiversity loss. There’s a useful website called VoteClimate2 where you can access MPs’ voting history on climate-related matters. This apolitical organisation will also advise which vote in your constituency will provide the strongest vote for the climate. In the meantime, they will demonstrate to the parties through their membership numbers just how many people will be voting for the climate – this should hopefully influence the manifestos!

This approach is also taken by a couple of other campaigns that would be useful to look up: The Commitment3 and Greenpeace’s Project Climate Vote4. Neither of these will advise on how to vote in the next election but will help to pressure parties into ensuring climate policies are taken seriously. You can sign up to all these initiatives and by doing so you will help to demonstrate the strength of public feeling for serious climate policies.


1.      Climate Change Committee. 2023 Progress Report to Parliament. Available at: https://www.theccc.org.uk/publication/2023-progress-report-to-parliament/. Accessed 1 March 2024

2.      VoteClimate UK. Available at: https://voteclimate.uk/. Accessed 1 March 2024

3.      The Commitment. Available at: https://www.thecommitment.uk/. Accessed 1 March 2024

4.      Greenpeace. Project Climate Vote. Available at: https://www.greenpeace.org.uk/take-action/project-climate-vote/. Accessed 1 March 2024