If you can’t or aren’t ready to change your career to work on climate issues full-time, there are actions you can take to complement your career, and even test out whether a bigger change is the right next step for you.
There has been a lot of public discussion about how lifestyle changes can contribute to climate change, but the discussion has sometimes missed important factors. In a 2019 report Founders’ Pledge found that a country’s climate policy dramatically changes the impact of people’s lifestyle changes. A study has outlined the positive impacts of veganism, whilst reducing your own food waste is in line with Project Drawdown’s main recommendations.
Volunteering is a great way to see whether doing direct work is a good fit for you. Volunteering allows you to have a direct impact, but the overall impact may be more limited given time constraints. You can volunteer for climate advocacy organisations, citizen science projects or your local political party.
Donations can be a highly cost-effective complement to lifestyle changes. By donating to effective climate charities you redirect your money to someone in a better position to address the problem. For most developed countries, an average income is hundreds of times more than what the world’s poorest people have. Thus, even a small percentage of your income can have a big impact. You can see a list of promising charities here.