We’re about two decades from a climate change disaster, according to a new report from accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Looking at how the world economies are measuring up to promises they made to curtail emissions, the report underscores that we’re on track to double the amount of global warming agreed upon at the 2009 United Nations summit on climate change. Clearly, it’s time to change course.
But part of that means voting the right people into power to address environmental urgency, which is why outdoor retailer Patagonia is teaming up with the art-driven, crowdsourcing platform Creative Action Network and the Canary Project (an art organization) on a campaign to encourage millennials to vote in the upcoming midterm election.
Patagonia is hoping the campaign, “Vote the Environment,” will help turn the tide this November. The initiative encourages artists to design environmentally-minded posters and screenprints, which raise money for both the project and artist as well as voting advocacy group HeadCount. Patagoina is also linking environmental records for candidates and voter registration information on the project site.
“We recognize that there’s an environmental crisis going on,” says Lisa Pike Sheehy, Patagonia’s global environmental initiatives director. “I feel like we’re at that tipping point, and that’s another reason why we decided to put resources behind the midterms and not just wait another two years.”
In fact, just 23 percent of that important demographic of millennials said they will “definitely be voting” in the midterm election, according to a recent poll from Harvard’s Institute of Politics. But it’s this core group of voters that are most important and care more about the environment than their parents.
“Art can inspire people to remember why they care about the environment, memories of experiences they’ve had in the environment, things that reports and talking points and press releases don’t necessarily surface in the same way,” says Max Slavkin, co-founder and CEO of Creative Action Network.
“Especially young people who get so much information and news online by scrolling through images, rather than by reading articles,” he adds. “It’s a great way to reach a new generation of people who typically are under-involved in politics in general.”