30 of the Most Impactful Climate Change Quotes
by Paul Davies
Climate Change Quotes
The impact that world leaders, celebrities, scientists and other high-profile individuals can have by speaking out about climate issues on a global scale is huge.
With the rise of social media, influencers now have an even bigger platform and a captive audience to express their views. Here is a selection of some of the best climate change quotes from:
- Religious Leaders
- Business Leaders
Celebrity Climate Change Quotes
Over the past few years, more and more celebrities have thrown their backing behind environmental issues.
It used to seem as if actor Leonardo Di Caprio was a lone celebrity voice on climate change, merely using award ceremonies to share his message. His oscar winning speech for 'The Revenant' was broadcast to over 34.4 million viewers, and resulted in the largest increase in public engagement with climate change ever.
“Climate change is real. It is happening right now, it is the most urgent threat facing our entire species and we need to work collectively together and stop procrastinating.”
Leonardo Di Caprio, Actor & Environmentalist
"One thing leads to the other. Deforestation leads to climate change, which leads to ecosystem losses, which negatively impacts our livelihoods - it's a vicious cycle."
Gisele Bundchen, Supermodel & UN Goodwill Ambassador
“Climate change is the greatest threat to our existence in our short history on this planet. Nobody’s going to buy their way out of its effects."
Mark Ruffalo, Actor & Environmentalist
“I hope to use my celebrity to motivate people and contribute to moving our global society back from the brink. I am surprised environment is not at the top of the agenda. What is more important than good and clean air?” -
Don Cheadle, Actor & UN Environment Goodwill Ambassador
"It’s important for me to have hope because that’s my job as a parent, to have hope, for my kids, that we’re not going to leave them in a world that’s in shambles, that’s a chaotic place, that’s a dangerous place."
James Cameron, Film Director
"I’ve starred in a lot of science fiction movies and, let me tell you something, climate change is not science fiction. This is a battle in the real world, it is impacting us right now."
Arnold Schwarzenegger, Actor & Former Governor of California
“Let’s double down on solar energy, let’s be more energy-efficient, let’s weatherize our homes. We can build a better, healthier economy based on good-paying, clean energy jobs.”
Ian Somerhalder, Actor
Climate Change Quotes by Politicians and World Leaders
"We don’t have time to sit on our hands as our planet burns. For young people, climate change is bigger than election or re-election. It’s life or death."
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, US Politician & Activist
“By polluting the oceans, not mitigating CO2 emissions and destroying our biodiversity, we are killing our planet. Let us face it, there is no planet B."
Emmanuel Macron, President of France
“We are the first generation to feel the effect of climate change and the last generation who can do something about it."
Barack Obama, Former US President
“Believe in the power of your own voice. The more noise you make, the more accountability you demand from your leaders, the more our world will change for the better."
Al Gore, Former US Vice President
“I hold a vision of this blue green planet, safe and in balance. At the end of the Fossil Fuel Era, we are emerging to a new reality. We are ready to make the next leap - as momentous as abolishing slavery or giving women the vote."
Elizabeth May, Leader of Green Party of Canada
“Climate change knows no borders. It will not stop before the Pacific Islands and the whole of the international community here has to shoulder a responsibility to bring about sustainable development.”
Angela Merkel, Chancellor of Germany
United Nations Climate Change Quotes
“The world is reaching the tipping point beyond which climate change may become irreversible. If this happens, we risk denying present and future generations the right to a healthy and sustainable planet – the whole of humanity stands to lose."
Kofi Annan, Former Secretary-General of UN
“Climate change is the single greatest threat to a sustainable future but, at the same time, addressing the climate challenge presents a golden opportunity to promote prosperity, security and a brighter future for all."
Ban Ki-Moon, Secretary General of UN
Religious Leaders Climate Change Quotes
“The time for seeking global solutions is running out. We can find suitable solutions only if we act together and in agreement."
Pope Francis, 266th Catholic Pope
"Twenty-five years ago people could be excused for not knowing much, or doing much, about climate change. Today we have no excuse."
Desmond Tutu, Former Archbishop of Cape Town
Climate Change Quotes from Scientists
“Pollution and climate change by excessive burning of fossil fuels are real threats, not the people who warn that we must take these threats seriously."
David Suzuki, Canadian Academic & Environmental Broadcaster
"What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make."
Dr Jane Goodall, Scientist & Activist
“It’s not that the world hasn’t had more carbon dioxide, it’s not that the world hasn’t been warmer. The problem is the speed at which things are changing. We are inducing a sixth mass extinction event kind of by accident and we don’t want to be the ‘extinctee.’"
Bill Nye, 'The Science Guy'
"One can see from space how the human race has changed the Earth. Nearly all of the available land has been cleared of forest and is now used for agriculture or urban development. The polar icecaps are shrinking and the desert areas are increasing. At night, the Earth is no longer dark, but large areas are lit up. All of this is evidence that human exploitation of the planet is reaching a critical limit. But human demands and expectations are ever-increasing. We cannot continue to pollute the atmosphere, poison the ocean and exhaust the land. There isn't any more available."
Stephen Hawking, Physicist & Author
“It’s not climate change that needs to be tackled. It is the political power of the fossil fuel industry."
Richard Denniss, Chief Economist, The Australian Institute
Climate Change Quotes by Activists
“Adults keep saying we owe it to the young people, to give them hope, but I don’t want your hope. I don’t want you to be hopeful. I want you to panic. I want you to feel the fear I feel every day. I want you to act. I want you to act as you would in a crisis. I want you to act as if the house is on fire, because it is.”
Greta Thunberg, 16 year-old Swedish Activist
Climate Change Quotes by Broadcasters and Journalists
"We really need to kick the carbon habit and stop making our energy from burning things. Climate change is also really important. You can wreck one rainforest then move, drain one area of resources and move onto another, but climate change is global."
Sir David Attenborough, Natural World Broadcaster
“The Earth is in a death spiral. It will take radical action to save us."
George Monbiot, Journalist
Business Leaders Climate Change Quotes
“Climate change is a terrible problem, and it absolutely needs to be solved. It deserves to be a huge priority."
Bill Gates, Founder of Microsoft
“Climate change is a huge challenge, but it can be brought in line if governments, businesses and individuals work together."
Sir Richard Branson, Founder of Virgin Group
“We are running the most dangerous experiment in history right now, which is to see how much carbon dioxide the atmosphere can handle before there is an environmental catastrophe."
Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla & SpaceX
Powerful Climate Change Quotes & Proverbs
Here are a few extra quotes. They weren't strictly made about climate change, but they explain the reasons why this is such a human-race defining issue with elegance and poise.
"The Earth is a fine place and worth fighting for."
Ernest Hemingway, Author
"We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children."
Native American Proverb
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