Climate change is a global emergency. It's without a doubt, the largest and most important issue of our generation.
We're already seeing the impacts of this change on our climate. Average global temperatures have increased by 1°C since pre-industrial levels. Extreme weather events - such as the recent heatwaves and wildfires in North America, Siberia and Australia; flooding across central Europe, China, India and parts of Africa - are forecast to happen more and more with climate change.
There are also critical tipping points we must avoid going beyond to maintain the environment that we enjoy now. Recent scientific reports show that the North Atlantic currents that drive the gulf stream may be close to a critical transition. When this has happened previously, it's had devastating consequences, plunging northern Europe and eastern North America into a deep freeze, heating the tropics and disrupting monsoons. Other ecosystems are reaching similar irreversible tipping points, such as the Amazon rainforest, Arctic permafrost and Antarctic ice sheets.
The Paris Agreement commits the UK to emissions reductions that limit global warming to well below 2°C and preferably 1.5°C compared to pre-industrial levels, becoming carbon neutral by 2050. From 31 October, the UN Climate Change Conference COP26 will take place in Glasgow, where the UK will host talks with countries from around the world to set ambitious 2030 emissions reductions targets.
We all need to do our part to reduce emissions to avoid the extreme impacts of climate change. You might think that large corporations are responsible for most climate change. But in reality, smaller businesses are accountable for half of all business carbon emissions. That's why it's vital that all brands, no matter how small, do their part to tackle climate change. Together we can reduce reliance on fossil fuels and limit greenhouse gas emissions.
At Cooper & Gracie HQ, we're investing in renewable energy sources to reduce our carbon footprint.
For example, our heat is provided by air source heat pumps, which absorb heat from the outside air and use it to heat the office and provide hot water. In addition, we're looking to move our electricity over to renewable energy by installing solar panels. We're also continuing to make efficiencies in our supply chain, reducing emissions related to transportation and manufacturing, and minimising our overall environmental footprint.
We're dedicated to providing you with 100% natural products for your pets, home and garden that are socially and environmentally responsible. We believe that together we can do some good and feel good too. If you'd like to find out more about our work to be a sustainable and socially responsible business, check out the rest of our Sustainability Series on our blog.
Written in collaboration with GB Sustainability