14. O.O.O. for the planet

On September 20, our five-person team will be O.O.O. for the planet. We’ll be downing our pencils, closing our laptops and showing solidarity for the Global Climate Strike.

We’re striking because it’s too hot to work. Because our winters are like springs, our springs are like summers, our summers are hot messes and we ain’t seen nothing yet.

We’re striking because Paris was a dream. Because two degrees looked easy in 2015, but  now no country looks close to achieving it.

We’re striking because the world is calling in sick. Because diseases are spreading as the tropical rain belt moves north, followed by the mosquitos.

We’re striking because Greta can’t do it all. We should be making her generation hopeful, not making our children our hope.

We’re striking because some like it hot. Shareholders of oil companies and energy companies in particular, and all the deniers they’re funding.

We’re striking because the science only gets us so far. The data is crystal clear, but we need hearts as well as minds.We’re striking because of painted wolves. They’re one of the one million species at risk of extinction from human activities.

We’re striking because it’s nearly 420. ‘It’ being the peak average of CO2 particles in the atmosphere in parts per million, and this May’s count being the highest on record. Best not to inhale.

We’re striking because Trump, Johnson and Bolsanaro don’t care. They’re pushing coal, slamming internationalism and burning the Amazon – making our planet victim to their fragile, bloated, toxic masculinity. 

We’re striking because natural disasters are becoming less natural. Because the news shouts breathlessly about hurricanes, rain bombs, landslides and wildfires, but won’t say that mankind makes them happen. 

We’re striking because the climate crisis is unjust. It’s a product of wealthy nations becoming wealthier, and its by-product is that the world’s poorest nations will suffer.

We’re striking because we’ve got twelve years max. That’s all that’s left before nature’s cycles can’t be changed by human intervention.

We’re striking because leaders need to hear from us. Politicians are entering into a string of critical conferences across a climate superyear and they’ve got to know what we want. (Add your Voice for the Planet here and create a call that will be impossible for policymakers to ignore).

We’re striking because others are striking. Because NGOs, academics, children, parents, doctors, unions and agencies are standing up, and so should we.

And we’re striking because it’s not that complicated. Yes the climate crisis may look inextricably knotted and horribly inevitable, but humanity is dogged, and humanity is smart, and if enough of us show the will, imagination and endeavour to avert it, we have a chance.

Of course there are many reasons not to strike. The strike’s in our calendars, but there’s been pressure to ‘delete event’ many times, for all sorts of reasons. Briefing meetings. Presentations. Sign-offs. Meetings that people have just “popped in” our diaries. Slots that are “the only slots” that others can make. Fear of missing creative opportunities. Fear of missing deadlines. Fear of losing a piece of work. Fear of making a little less this month. 

But these are the everyday struggles and strains of doing business as usual. And business as usual is the problem. 

Sadly, worryingly, blindly – and for some, knowingly – we’re all part of an economic system that’s amassing wealth today by extracting tomorrow’s quality of life. Or to put it another way: we work for climate change. 

For one day at least, let’s not.

On September 20, please go O.O.O. for the planet, and join our team and millions of others on the Global Climate Strike.

Go O.O.O. with Studio Moross

Our friends at Studio Moross have created a brilliant image and GIF to let others know you’re O.O.O. for the planet. To tell people you’re striking (and to hint strongly that they should be too), here’s how to set up your email auto-reply:

  • Download your O.O.O. for the planet GIF or JPEG here
  • Set your email auto-reply on for September 20 or September 27
  • Set your subject line as O.O.O. for the planet 
  • Drag the GIF or JPEG into the body of the email 
  • Add some blurb:

I’m O.O.O. for the planet today 

Find out more about the Global Climate Strike at globalclimatestrike.net 

  • Press OK, and strike away

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