Are you a Climate Protector?

One of the innovative projects coming out of Transition Kamloops’ Impact Fest event was the concept of wearable identifiers for folks working to protect the climate. Here’s an update from Helen Coombs, who is spearheading this initiative:

Helen is modelling one of the buttons, but her sweet daughter Elsa steals the show!


Occasionally, people have asked me what I’ve been up to and I’ll have a discussion with them about the efforts I’ve made to reduce my carbon footprint.  Months later, some friends are eating vegan multiple days a week and my mother-in-law has moved her accounts to a credit union (less inclined to loan money to fossil fuel companies than a bank).  What strikes me about these instances is that I made an impact on greenhouse gas emission with nothing more than a simple conversation!  But I still find it hard to initiate a discussion, even with friends.

Enter the button.  Enter the armband.  They have questions on them like “Ask me why I’m happy” and “Ask me about my Bicycle”, or a slogan like “Make the Climate Great Again”.  Visible wearable items that show you’re  part of the fight, and promote conversation.  You’re showing that you care and that you’re doing something extra, no matter how small, to help the human race survive.  You don’t have to be an expert to wear one, just be willing to have a conversation about something you care about that relates to climate change.  Whether that’s bees, bicycles, gardening, power, investments, buying local, consumerism, beef-free diet, whatever it is that makes you happy.

The main goal is to have a positive conversation: explain that it’s possible for everyone to do something – take a shorter shower, eat less beef, buy second hand instead of new – everyone has time to do something and some things will save you money in the process!

If I could provide advice, it would be not to be critical of what someone’s doing.  If they’re doing something, anything, that’s great and being critical of that may just put them off trying.  Secondly, I don’t know about anyone else, but I’m tired of scare tactics.  I don’t need to know that we’re doomed already (which may be the case, but I’m not going to depress myself) – so try not to use scare tactics.

The people we’re trying to talk to are people who know that climate change is an issue (apparently about half the population think it’s the biggest issue of our time), but don’t know what to do about it and don’t have the time, or motivation, to research what they can do.  We’re not trying to change the mind of deniers, etc. 

If you would like a button and / or an armband, please contact me at  I am also looking for volunteers to help make / sew them.  And if you have any ribbon you don’t want, I wouldn’t mind some more variety!  I am not charging anything for them currently, though Arjun Singh has kindly offered to pay for some buttons which is great – THANKS.  Good luck!

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