What innovation means to me

I’ve been asked about this a lot recently, so here are some of my thoughts. Innovation to me means doing something different. In the context of climate action, I believe it starts with science and technology. However, this is just a catalyst to help people understand how changes they make now will accelerate overall progress. Empowering everyone to turn their own data into information, instead of being reliant on information shared by governments or other central organisations, is my preferred and novel approach.

I have found that inciting efforts from everyone to change their behaviours today is a difficult concept to grasp. Some people find it hard to imagine a future that is decades away and this is an important problem that needs to be addressed immediately. In the same way that tackling air pollution is often talked about as ‘making the invisible visible’, we need to use data and build models of how the planet will look 10, 20 and 30 years from now if just a small percentage of the global population make the changes needed now.

Climate change is an energy issue. Decisions taken today by the world’s population will be the making of all our futures. On a personal level, the energy that we put into our everyday lives and a commitment to make changes now will affect future generations immensely. Personal energy, pledges and action are crucial to preserving our planet, as well as addressing issues around the consumption and production of energy as a commodity. Innovation to me is helping people to understand their own impact on the climate crisis by collecting personal data to tell their own story, helping everyone to become change-makers and contributing to the collective effort needed to make a difference.

Speaking at the November countdown to COP26, Boris Johnson noted the urgency to act as “climate change will remain the most enduring threat to the futures of our children and grandchildren”. This is my generation. We can catalyse the rate of response. We have the power to change the world therefore helping everyone to innovate and do things differently in their everyday lives. 

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