As world leaders prepare to meet at COP26, here's what we can do at home

Welcome to the latest article on all things plants and animals, in which I want to look at the build up to COP26, what it means for us and what we can do.

COP means Conference Of (all) Parties – the parties being the different nations around the world, and it is a United Nations led event.

This time it is being held in Glasgow which is a UK leader in all things plant-based already.

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Cows gather near the coal-fired power station in Niederaussem, Germany, Sunday, Oct. 24, 2021. The climate change conference COP26 will start on Sunday in Glasgow.(AP Photo/Michael Probst)

At the time of writing there are a number of nations who have not accepted the invite to attend and unfortunately these are the countries we need to attend, as they are some of the biggest fossil fuel polluters on the planet (Russia and China).

But from their point of view we need to give them support in moving away from these polluting fuels as they have massive populations depending on them.

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Hopefully they will attend and then the next challenge is to get everyone to agree a way forward which works for all of us.

I was watching a programme called ‘The Trick’ the other day about hackers who published misleading extracts from the work of Professor Phil Jones in an attempt to derail his climate change work.

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Noone ever claimed responsibility for the hacking but there are many who have a vested interest in the main industries contributing to climate change.

The professor said that the fallout from this hacking wasted 10 years of valuable research.

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So, we are where we are now, what can we do? Everywhere you look shops and businesses are offering the ‘greener’ alternative or the ‘eco-friendly’ solution but what does that really mean and what should we be looking out for?

We should certainly be reducing the amount of chemicals we pour down our drains and into our waterways (whether that is directly or indirectly), we should all be stopping single-use plastic and looking at re-usable alternatives. We should also be reducing the amount of clothing we buy, particularly ‘fast fashion’ as this impacts not only on our pocket but on the environment, as well as those who work in unsafe conditions for a pittance both in the UK and abroad.

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There are many other ways we can reduce our impact on our beautiful planet – the easiest way is to change our food to plant based.

It doesn’t need to be expensive – all of our local stores in the borough – Aldi, Lidl, ASDA, Morrison’s, Tescos etc – all have decent quality and cheap own-brand ranges.

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It can be a healthier way of living but equally we have plenty plant based junk food for those treats, so not only do we not miss out, we benefit the planet and animals.

There are many ways in which we can help our planet and all of its inhabitants – we need to be looking at the impact our lifestyle causes sooner rather than later.

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We don’t want our children asking us why we sat back and did nothing.

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