It is no longer a secret that planet Earth is getting warmer, forests are shrinking and the desert is advancing. Everyone is now aware of these facts, or at least one of them. Climate inaction can therefore be summed up as ignoring these facts, and/or not acting on them.

Alex Emeka
July 9, 2024
min read


As you can easily guess, climate inaction is the pure and simple fact of not taking action to preserve the environment and the climate. It can involve both authorities and civilians. Everyone is concerned about climate change, not acting on their scale is reprehensible, whether you are a member of the government or a simple citizen.

It is no longer a secret that planet Earth is getting warmer, forests are shrinking and the desert is advancing. Everyone is now aware of these facts, or at least one of them. Climate inaction can therefore be summed up as ignoring these facts, and/or not acting on them. Even if it is true that before we talk about climate inaction, we must recognize that it all starts with actions that are taken to harm the environment.


Before getting to the damage caused by climate inaction, we must first talk about the devastating acts that have been taken against the climate since the advent of mass industrialization. The abusive exploitation of natural resources, mines and forests are the most dangerous actions we take against the climate. Nature still has instruments to cushion the damage of pollution, its main weapon against this is the forest. Trees are a natural conditioner, they absorb carbon dioxide from the air and produce oxygen. Unfortunately, human activities are also destroying the forest that is needed to reduce cooling the planet. Between forests and the atmosphere, carbon circulates naturally. It is on the one hand stored - in biomass, in organic matter and in the soil - when forests live and develop and on the other hand emitted by deforestation or when fires or storms occur. For a long time, the global forest balance at the world level remained positive. But that could change.

Two studies indeed show today that the humid tropical forests are more than ever in danger. The unbridled exploitation of wood, rivers and massive agriculture contribute to drastically reducing the number of trees we have to fight against global warming. According to work commissioned by the non-governmental organization, Rainforest Foundation Norway, logging and land conversion ̶ mainly for agricultural purposes ̶ has wiped out 34% of the primary rainforests. They have degraded ̶  becoming partially destroyed or destroyed, these then get replaced by secondary forests ̶  30% more, leaving them more vulnerable to forest fires or future exploitation. All this, added to the fact that nothing downstream is being done to lessen the impact of the consequences, is an immense danger, considered by some experts to be more harmful than the nuclear threat.


The Global Risks Report, published by the World Economic Forum with support from insurer Marsh & McLennan, offers insight into what threatens global prosperity. 800 experts and decision-makers from around the world ranked their concerns based on their likelihood and impact. The 15th edition of the report shows that climate inaction is of greater concern than the nuclear threat. And for the first time, the top five global risks in terms of probability focus around the environment.

In previous reports, the most serious thing that could happen on earth, the most devastating in terms of impact, was the weapon of mass destruction, but now, the event that would have the most impact on earth is the climate. More precisely: a failure of climate action. Failure to act to save our environment would, according to the report, be more devastating for the planet than an atomic bomb. It seems alarmist, or impossible, but it is enough to see things from another angle to understand how important it is to act and to act quickly.


Protecting the environment means preserving the survival and future of humanity. Indeed, the environment is our source of food and drinking water. Air is our source of oxygen. The climate allows us to survive. And biodiversity is a potential reservoir of medicines. Preserving the environment is, therefore, a question of survival.

·         Protecting the environment means protecting our source of food and drinking water

Everything we eat and drink comes from nature. Therefore, pollution eventually ends up in our food: in the water we drink or in what we eat. And these pollutants can cause us to develop diseases or malformations.

We must therefore ensure that nature produces sufficient and healthy water and food. For this, we must avoid polluting the soil and the seas. We must avoid careless disposal or overspreading of chemicals. Protecting our source of food means preserving the survival and therefore the future of humanity.

·         Protecting the environment means preserving the quality of the air we breathe

Air is essential to our survival. We cannot survive more than a few minutes without breathing. The air brings us oxygen, fuel for our cells.

But when we breathe, we don't just inhale oxygen. We also absorb many other things. With each inspiration, we inhale the gases and particles that are in the atmosphere. Some of these gases and particles are harmful to our bodies. With each inspiration, we, therefore, absorb a little poison. Breathing then puts our health at risk and makes us sick. When breathing should only keep us alive.

We must therefore be careful not to pollute our atmosphere. We must not release harmful gases or particles dangerous to life into it. Protecting air quality means preserving health and therefore the future of humanity.

·         Protecting the environment means preserving the climate we know

Our societies have lifestyles adapted to the current climate. If the climate changes, our societies will not be adapted to it. Some regions will suffer serious disorders. Depending on where you are in the world, there will be rising waters, droughts, repeated floods, violent storms, etc. These cataclysms will drive people away or decimate them. People will have to move or change their way of life. Conflicts will break out to be able to live in the spared regions.

The flora and fauna will evolve with the modification of the climate. Some plants will no longer be suitable. Local agriculture will be affected. Parasites will spread into new regions, spreading disease to humans, plants and animals.

We are already beginning to see that the Earth's global temperature is increasing. And this modification is extremely fast. Nature will not have time to adapt. The current balance will be upset.

We must therefore limit our impact on the climate by reducing our greenhouse gas emissions. Because our atmospheric emissions accentuate the natural greenhouse effect, which contributes to heating our planet. To do this, we must take great care to limit our energy consumption. Taking care not to deteriorate the climate means preserving the fragile balance of the Earth and therefore the future of humanity.

·         Protecting the environment means preserving the biodiversity we need

Biodiversity is the variety of animal and plant species found in nature. All these species must be respected and preserved, for the sole reason that they are the creation of GOD, like a man. But all these species are also necessary for the survival and the future of man.

Plants and animals can contribute to our health. Because it is among wild species, sometimes still unknown, that man has discovered or will still discover medicines.

It is also these wild species that can help our agriculture. They can help improve the yield or disease resistance of our plantations or livestock. Nature is a source of future discoveries and solutions to our problems. It would be suicidal to destroy all this before having been able to benefit from it. We must prevent the destruction of natural spaces. We must protect endangered species. Preserving biodiversity means safeguarding a reservoir of future solutions to our problems. It is to preserve the future of humanity.


You must realize and make everyone aware of the importance of protecting the environment. Because protecting the environment means protecting humanity and enabling it to survive. Man does not live alone and isolated. He lives in an environment on which he is dependent.

Living in cities, surrounded by technology, often makes us forget that. But if we damage our environment, it will quickly remind us of our dependence on it.

To ensure the survival and therefore the future of humanity, it is essential to protect the environment today. And for that, we can each act at our level, to change things.


There are very simple gestures, which on a scale of millions of people can however considerably increase the environmental conditions. These little reflexes, if everyone applies them, will significantly reduce the degradation of the environment.

Food, transport, energy... there are no small changes, only good habits. Our choices as consumers, business leaders, employees or responsible citizens can make a difference. Every day, we have the power and the duty to act!

Optimize your energy consumption

Fossil fuels (oil, coal, gas) release greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, responsible for global warming. The future belongs to renewable energies (solar, wind) whose ecological footprint is minimal. Here are some simple tips to reduce our energy consumption and accelerate the energy transition.

Telephones, computers, televisions, printers are major consumers of electricity. While some today operate on battery power (telephones and computers for example) and are therefore less energy-intensive, a few simple gestures are still possible to lighten their burden on our environment...and our bill!

• Hunting for “little red lights”: leaving your appliances on standby can represent up to 10% of your electricity bill. It is essential to remember to completely turn off your computers, televisions, printers, etc. by unplugging them at night and when we are away. A television on standby for an entire day consumes as much as watching it for the duration of two films.

• Unplug your devices to cut off the power directly: a transformer, that of the telephone, for example, left plugged in but inactive, continues to consume electricity. For many devices, pressing “off” is not enough!

• Buy electrical appliances with environmental labels: These labels guarantee that the products are easily repairable and recyclable, that they are energy efficient in use, and that they do not contain certain substances that are dangerous to human health. You can also consult the Totpen Guide site, of which WWF is a partner: if you are considering buying a product, Topten Guide advises you on the type of product according to your needs (size, functions, etc.). The site makes it possible to identify the most energy-efficient products in the plethoric supply of stores. You will also find advice on how to use your products so that they last a long time without weighing too heavily on your electricity bill.

• Installing LED bulbs: this is the most economical, ecological and healthiest solution today. They are indeed much cheaper than halogen bulbs or low consumption bulbs, consume less energy, do not contain mercury (unlike low consumption bulbs, which greatly complicates their recycling), light up instantly and neutralize the risk of burns.


Present everywhere, packaging represents a considerable part of our waste and is often useless. Some manufacturers also offer products without packaging to reduce the amount of waste. You too can change your shopping behaviour by adopting a few simple habits that can help the planet.

In our consumer society, we tend to invest in single-use or limited-life products. It is recommended to buy reusable and robust products.

• Prefer products with as little packaging as possible: when purchasing, favour large containers or bulk products, for example.

• Favor recyclable or reusable packaging: from now on, merchants no longer have the right to offer free plastic bags or sachets to their customers (except bulk food products). Beware of so-called biodegradable or fragmentable bags: their chemical impact on the soil is such that it is better, for them too, to prefer a reusable bag.

• Do not buy bottled water: plastic bottles represent a considerable part of household waste. Tap water is of excellent quality and there are several devices to filter it.

• Favor reusable products that last over time: invest in quality equipment that will last a long time. Avoid disposables - wipes, plastic or cardboard dishes - and buy refills or concentrated products rather than the whole product again (ink cartridge refills, maintenance products, etc.).


The best waste remains that which does not exist, it is therefore everyone's duty to limit its production while recycling. Some organic waste can be of great use by becoming compost. Their virtues can replace certain chemical products that we use to protect the soil. Prioritize use over waste: this could be the credo of the sharing economy. We have many unused objects in our homes that would make others happy. So, instead of throwing away these objects or buying new ones, let's turn to the circular economy and give a second life to our clothes and objects.

• Make your compost at the foot of your building or in your garden: odourless, you can feed the plants in your vegetable patch or your balcony while reusing your organic waste.

• Reuse paper and cardboard: packaging cardboard can be used for other shipments, for example. As much as possible, using the back of the sheets already printed on the front is a habit to take. Once read, offer your newspaper to your neighbour, you will make both a happy and a gesture for the planet!

• Embark on the adventure of the sharing economy: consider buying second-hand clothes, furniture, electronic devices. If you rarely use some of your household appliances or if you no longer have any use for them, you can donate them to an association, a recycling center or even barter them or share them with SEL members. (Local Exchange System) nearest.


The consumer society in which we live is gradually entering the era of selective sorting and recycling. These operations make it possible to give a second life (or even more!) to used objects. Recycling is only effective if the waste is properly sorted by everyone. Specific waste, whether batteries, multimedia equipment, bulky objects or even medicines, poses a problem. Very often, we do not know what to do with it and we get rid of it randomly. However, there are simple ways to part with them and give them a second life.

• Adopt the right gestures when throwing away your garbage cans: each item of waste has its own garbage can. By carrying out this sorting at home, you promote the recycling of a lot of waste. Please note that the colour code of selective sorting bins is not the same everywhere: it all depends on the system. If your municipality has not adopted selective sorting, campaign for it!

• Properly dispose of used batteries and electronic products: batteries, batteries, multimedia devices are disposed of in special containers found in recycling centers, shopping centers or specialized stores.

• Do not leave bulky items in the wild: for all equipment such as household appliances or furniture, you have two choices: contact the bulky items removal service (check the scheduled removal days with your municipality) or drop off your items at the recycling center.


Internal combustion vehicles release toxic particles and greenhouse gases into the air which contribute to global warming but also to the deterioration of our state of health. If you have a vehicle of this type, and you really need it, there are a multitude of small tips to reduce its fuel consumption and its carbon footprint.

• Adopt “economical” driving: this saves up to 30% fuel compared to “sporty” driving. As far as possible, brakes and sudden accelerations should be avoided.

• Avoid overconsumption of fuel: do not open the windows too often, otherwise the vehicle's wind resistance and therefore its consumption will increase. Furthermore, it is more economical to switch off the engine after 30 seconds of stopping.

• Inflate your tires to the correct pressure: an under-inflated tire considerably increases a vehicle's fuel consumption. Your wallet, and especially the planet will thank you.


One action each of us can take is activism. It's free, poignant, and it allows authorities and businesses to understand that citizens are affected and are interested in what they are doing. Together, we can make our planet better and more livable