Five climate commitments to you as we face the defining issue of our times

Editorial: The Independent has always put the environment at the centre of what we do – this has never been more important

Wednesday 13 October 2021 13:39 BST
<p>‘Together we can change societies and pressure our leaders’ </p>

‘Together we can change societies and pressure our leaders’

The Independent has long-recognised the gravity of the climate crisis. Pioneering, agenda-setting climate journalism has been a central pillar of our coverage for decades – acknowledging the fact that this is the defining issue of our times. With the scale of this emergency becoming ever clearer, we offer five commitments to our readers.

1. We’re aiming for Net Zero by 2030

Net Zero commitments rightly deserve criticism if they are not backed by action. So we are making ours in the context of these commitments and will report back on our progress. Not just our successes, but the challenges and problems that are hard to solve. Since no one can know every detail about the future, exact dates in pledges can be misleading. So we’re making a commitment that we will target Net Zero status for The Independent as soon as we can – a thorough carbon audit has shown that a deadline of 2030 should be achievable.

2. The Independent will always be a trustworthy source of climate news and views

We have already appointed specialist climate journalists to our staff in the UK, US and Asia to report on the global crisis, building on decades of climate journalism. And we will continue to add to our team. We will also invite more and more independently minded commentators to tell us their views – so long as they are based in demonstrable fact, not delusion or misinterpretation. We will hold the powerful to account. And we will not silo climate articles in one section, but reflect it across our coverage – from politics to fashion.

3. We will inspire change

We refuse to believe that you cannot make a difference. Yes, governments and big businesses need to lead, but when added up our individual acts are powerful. Together we can change societies and pressure our leaders. We know that many of you want to be a part of this global change for the good of everyone. So we will inspire you to bring change to your life, however big or small. And we want to hear from you – please tell us about the changes you are making at

4. We respect that independently minded readers will make their own choices

It is not The Independent’s job to judge you. We must all find our own way. So we will not ban subjects you find interesting. We will aim to work with all kinds of groups and companies to encourage change. And we welcome anyone who wants to make a difference. We will aim to include, not exclude. Your personal decisions are up to you. What we will do is provide information, context and interesting opinions – and we will respect your choices.

5. We will be open

We will not claim we know it all. Anyone who tells you they know exactly what it takes for our world to achieve a sustainable future is not telling you the whole story. We will write about the challenges we at The Independent face on our own mission to achieve Net Zero, and we welcome you to join the conversation constructively, so that we can face the same challenges together.

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