Here are some invitations and resources to find ways you can connect with our movement, or find your own tribe or pathway to action.
You are welcome
You can decide if you want to join our community, and we put no limits on who can sign up. For example, you might simply enjoy being creative, or are involved in a community or heritage group. We aim to be an inclusive movement, positively welcoming diversity, particularly people with experience of racism, injustice and marginalisation.
Here are some of the activities included in our broad definition of the arts and culture sector:
- Design: craft, architecture, place-making, fashion, eco-design, product design, graphics and more.
- Intangible heritage: indigenous and diaspora groups, faith organisations, sacred and healing practices, and more.
- Museums: science, natural history, art, history, industry, politics, eco-museums and more.
- Heritage: historic buildings, botanic gardens, landscape trusts, historic towns, archaeology, heritage crafts and more.
- Archives and Libraries: public libraries, specialist libraries, civic archives and more.
- Nature: gardening / landscape design, creative science, ceremonial land stewardship, and more.
- Wellbeing and participatory practice: arts for health, nature-based therapists, socially engaged arts, disability arts and more.
- Creative industries: digital & creative technologies, games, media, marketing, publishing and more.
- Learning & education: teachers, facilitators, researchers, lecturers, Public Engagement with science and research and more.
- Arts: theatre, music, visual art, literature, live art, film, dance, comedy, public art, outdoor arts, street arts, carnival arts, environmental arts and more.
Find your tribe
Some other declarer’s groups
Households Declare is for everyone in the UK, at least everyone who has a household.
Other declarer’s movements in and beyond the Cultural sector are Music Declares, Architects Declare, Health Declares, Heritage Declares, Business Declares, Landscape Architects Declare and Tourism Declares.
Some groups with similar goals
Environmental activism groups that welcome new members
Ideas for creative activism
Art is different from activism because art is open-ended rather than driven by particular goals. But, art and activism can mix in exciting ways:
- See our hashtag #CultureTakesAction for inspiring examples from the world of arts and culture, being activists for climate and ecological action.
- A resource from the Roundhouse on creative activism for young people.
- See this resource for 100s of ideas for culture hacking, artivism, creating a spectacle, acts of kindness and more.
The emergency and why declare
There is only a 5% chance of limiting global average temperatures to less than 2° Celsius warmer than pre-industrial levels.
COP26, hosted by the UK in November 2021, aimed to continue holding nations to account to their Paris Agreement promises, but most nations’ plans are inadequate to stabilise the temperature increase between 1.5C and 2C.
2C has been wrongly seen by some as an upper safe limit. The Paris Agreement was based on the IPCC 5th Assessment which had been watered down due to pressure from high emitting nations. The actions from the Agreement are in no way adequate to mitigate or adapt to the emerging climate catastrophe in ways that will bring justice for the most affected people. The latest evidence suggests that the Paris targets will be insufficient to prevent a Hothouse Earth pathway.
The warnings of climate and ecological breakdown are all around:
Although it is difficult to estimate, or to project future rates of loss as the emergency worsens, already three species are lost to eternity each hour. In February, there were reports of a catastrophic decline in insect populations which will soon affect our food supplies. The Food and Agriculture Organisation has reported that 63% of plants, 11% of birds, and 5% of fish and fungi are in decline. There is a debilitating loss of soil biodiversity, forests, grasslands, coral reefs, mangroves, seagrass beds and genetic diversity in crop and livestock species. Dead zones are growing in the oceans due to acidification and warming.
There has been a gradual destabilisation of the climate due to the extraction and burning of fossil fuels, and in the last few decades this has accelerated. Droughts are getting longer and more severe, causing more scarcity of food and water. Extreme weather events are becoming more intense and destructive. Heatwaves are already magnifying the fire risk around the world and causing heat stress deaths. Widespread floods are escalating. Rising sea levels are threatening coastal and riverside settlements. Global temperatures have increased by 1 degree Celsius from pre-industrial levels. Atmospheric CO2 levels are above 400 parts per million (ppm), which far exceeds the pre-industrial base level of 280ppm.
There are more signs that tipping points are being reached. In December 2018 it was reported that the rate of Greenland’s ice melt has quadrupled. Soon after, NASA discovered a huge cavern has opened up under Antarctica, and that a polar vortex destabilised sending freezing Arctic weather over the American mid-west whilst January 2019 was the warmest month in Australia, ever. In March 2019, the UN reported that sharp temperature rises in the Arctic are inevitable, even if the Paris goals are met. Reports in December 2021 say that the Thwaites glacier could shatter within 5 years, threatening every low-lying coastal city in the world.
Human rights and justice
The emergency includes rapidly rising inequality within and between nations, the deterioration of democracy and human rights, and conflicts over resources. This builds on centuries of historic injustices through racist colonial exploitation and annihilation of People of Colour and indigenous communities, appropriation of lands and extraction of natural resources. The world’s poorest 58% are responsible for only 14.5% of global CO2 emissions. The crisis – resulting from industrial practices and overconsumption by the richest – is worsening injustices faced by people in the Global South, indigenous land defenders in particular. Over time it will intensify inequalities experienced in every country.
There is also a generational justice issue. If we want people who are under the age of 20 to live a full life, we must stop burning fossil fuels now.
Other things you can do
- Ask your local arts or heritage organisations to declare with us and take action, if you don’t see them on our list.
- Find an organisation that has declared emergency, perhaps one near to you. Offer them help to deliver their action plans.
- If you have any influence, for example by being a writer, policy-maker, funder, politician or business director, please use this influence to share your concerns about the Earth crisis and your learning on how the Culture sector can help. See our archive of press releases and statements.
- Come along to one of our actions and events. You can find out about them by signing up to our newsletter.