Climate emergency

The Cabot Institute for the Environment is actively engaging the public in the face of the planet's Climate and Ecological Emergency. Below are just a few examples where academics at the University of Bristol have engaged in climate emergency activities.

Youth Climate Strikes

In September 2019, the Cabot Institute and its academics took part in the Youth Global Climate Strike in Bristol to show support for young people facing the climate and ecological emergency. We used the opportunity to do some public engagement, answering people's questions about the environment as we marched through the streets. View the pictures from the Climate Strike.

As part of this Strike, Dr Jess Hope lead a Carnival of Creatures – a parade of under-5s dressed as animals to highlight losses to biodiversity and its importance to the youngest members of our population. During the parade, Jess interviewed some of the participants about their favourite animals. You can watch the heart-warming video below.

To complement the film, Jess gave a training session with early years practitioners and childminders in Bristol. The session focused on climate change and how childminders can engage with it in their work with young children and help young children value and love the natural world. 

Extinction Rebellion talks

In July 2019, Caboteers Dr Jo House, Dr Alix Dietzel and Dr Ed Atkins shared their climate expertise with activists at an Extinction Rebellion event in Bristol in a series of short talks and Q&A sessions. 

Citizens Climate Assembly UK 

Professor Dale Southerton and Dr Jo House have been selected to be part of the new Climate Assembly UK. The Assembly was commissioned by six cross-party House of Commons Select Committees in summer 2019 in response to the Government’s commitment to meet net zero carbon emissions by 2050. Dale and Jo will use their expert knowledge to review written briefings for Assembly members and to support Expert Leads in their role. Read more

Jo spoke at the Citizens Climate Assembly UK in February 2020. She answered around 50 quickfire rapid questions from participants afterwards which she said was "intensive but fantastic, people asked such good questions, they were really engaged and enthusiastic to know what could be done. It was such a privilege to be there". You can watch her talk along with great short talks from experts on many different topics here, including David Attenborough, on the Climate Assembly UK website

Bristol Environmental Sustainability Board and Bristol Advisory Committee on Climate Change

The Mayor of Bristol has created new Governance structures to lead the city’s response to the climate emergency including the One City Plan and the Climate Action Plan: A new City Office Environmental Sustainability Board of which Cabot Institute Acting Director Professor Dale Southerton is a board member; and the Bristol Advisory Committee on Climate Change which is co-chaired by Caboteer Dr Jo House. Read about the Sustainability Board. Read about the Council action on climate change. The Bristol Advisory Committee on Climate Change provides technical expertise to help the city to understand and accelerate progress towards its ambition to be a carbon-neutral and climate-resilient city by 2030. The Committee provides technical advice on reducing greenhouse gas emissions and adaptation measures to all six ‘One City’ thematic boards, which cover the areas of economy, environmental sustainability, health and wellbeing, homes and communities, learning and skills, and transport and connectivity. Caboteer Dr Alix Dietzel also sits on the board. Read more

Environmental Public Engagement Network

The Cabot Institute has created a new public engagement network to engage local school students and young people about the environment and environmental issues. Our academics have been trained to deliver talks and workshops for young people and are DBS checked. If you would like to have one of our experts come and visit your school or organisation, please contact Rhys Charles in the Public Engagement Team at


Caboteers answering questions from the public at the Youth Climate Strike in September 2019.
cabot institute experts speaking at extinction rebellion event on Bristol Bridge
Jo House, Ed Atkins and Alix Dietzel sharing their expertise and answering questions at an Extinction Rebellion event.
Bristol Sustainability Board
Bristol’s response to the climate emergency has resulted in a new City Office Environmental Sustainability Board and the Bristol Advisory Committee on Climate Change.
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