The Royal Court Theatre Declares a Climate EmergencyPublished on Wed 3 Apr 2019
WHY HAVE WE MADE THIS DECISION?
In October 2018, the International Panel on Climate Change reported
that we only have 12 years to change how we live, globally.
Since then, new tipping points are still 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 was the
warmest month in Australia, ever.
60% of wildlife is already extinct and at least 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.
There is a debilitating loss of soil biodiversity, forests, grasslands, coral
reefs, mangroves, seagrass beds and genetic diversity in crop and
Human rights and justice
The environmental crisis is worsening injustices faced by people in the
Global South, indigenous land defenders in particular, and over time it
will intensify inequalities experienced in every country.
Climate breakdown is the leading generational justice issue.
WHAT CAN WE DO?
A cultural response to the emergency
If speedy and drastic action is taken, if we apply the solutions within
our reach, we can meet our climate goals. The need to take action on
climate is more urgent and more immediate than ever. Failure to act is
a failure of responsibility.
There is growing recognition of the contribution of arts, heritage and
civic organisations to prompt shifts in the ways we relate to one
another and the world, in our values and behaviours. Climate change
and ecocide is a deeply systemic problem that can only be tackled by
imagining and forging better ways of relating to each other and the
WE DEMAND TRUTH
We will work to challenge policies and narratives that obfuscate the
truth or delay action. We will communicate with artists, audiences and
our communities to support them to discover the truth about the
Emergency and the changes that are needed.
WE DEMAND ACTION
We will challenge policies and actions that do not help to reduce
emissions or consumption levels. We will actively work to imagine and
model ways that the theatre economy and ecology can lean towards
regenerating the planet’s resources while providing sustainably for
people’s needs. We pledge to step up our LTC-wide roadmap towards our
emissions reduction target by 2025.
WE DEMAND JUSTICE
We will do what is possible to enable dialogue and expression amidst
our global community of writers and artists about how the Emergency
will affect them and the changes that are needed.
We will support demands for more democracy within our civic
institutions and government.
We believe that all truth-telling, action and democratic work must be
underpinned by a commitment to justice based on intersectional
For information on our Culture Declares Emergency event see here.
For information on #CultureDeclaresEmergency see here.