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A network for change

This review platform is effecting climate action from leaders, brands and businesses
Katie Hill - Editor-in-Chief, My Green Pod
Ingmar Rentzhog, founder of We Don't Have Time

This article first appeared in our Organic September issue of My Green Pod Magazine, published on 14 September 2022. Click here to subscribe to our digital edition and get each issue delivered straight to your inbox

‘When Donald Trump was elected president in 2016, that was my real moment of clarity’, remembers Ingmar Rentzhog, founder and CEO of We Don’t Have Time. ‘I realised that our leaders are not going to fix the climate crisis for us; we need to do it ourselves, through the power of the many.’

Ingmar, a serial entrepreneur who has been described as an eco warrior and dubbed ‘Mark ZuckerVert’ by FranceTV2, founded the world’s largest review platform for climate solutions from the belief that ‘we have the ability to set things straight’. He’s helping to hold political and business leaders to account while also spreading a message of hope: he believes people power can fix the climate crisis.

We Don’t Have Time is a platform that invites and encourages dialogue with companies governments, organisations, startups and NGOs around the world. ‘We need to be inclusive and invite people who have been doing wrong historically – because we have all been doing it wrong – and have them join in on the action’, Ingmar explains. ‘Our vision is to influence society to act on the climate crisis before it’s too late.’

Creating a climate network

In 2018 We Don’t Have Time produced the world’s first digital and ‘no-fly’ climate conference – a pioneering move in pre-pandemic days when virtual conference attendance was unusual. A combination of high-level speakers and world-class production attracted a big audience.

‘We realised that a communications platform for climate issues was lacking, and that people at the forefront of climate action were longing for a place to communicate, exchange ideas and engage in solutions-oriented dialogues with like-minded people’, Ingmar explains.

Today, We Don’t Have Time’s growing community of more than 70,000 members is a diverse crowd of business leaders, scientists, academics, journalists, activists and engaged citizens in over 100 countries.

People-powered reviews

We Don’t Have Time harnesses the power of social media to highlight and spread climate solutions to influence businesses, organisations and political leaders to act on the climate crisis.

At the heart of the platform is a review system that allows members to send ‘Climate Love’, ‘Climate Warnings’ or ‘Climate Ideas’ to companies and individuals based on perceived levels of climate action.

Each member rating affects the climate score, so positive improvements are encouraged.

At the same time customers and other stakeholders can use the scores to get a sense of how hard a company or individual is working to address the climate emergency.

‘This is a great tool’, Ingmar explains, ‘because if companies know that many people want something, it’s often also a good business opportunity. I firmly believe that if we’re going to solve the climate crisis, we must make it profitable to save the planet.’

When a climate review gets 100 agrees, We Don’t Have Time reaches out to the recipient and asks for a reply. The more agrees, the harder the team works to get a dialogue going. ‘This really works’, Ingmar tells us. ‘Every week, our community gets replies from companies, organisations and leaders that have chosen to join the dialogue. Among the hundreds of respondents so far are BP, Deloitte, Shell and Ikea – and leaders like Jair Bolsonaro, Marc Zuckerberg and Jeff Bezos.’

Effecting change

A mounting body of research reveals that while most people are worried about the climate, only a few are acting on it. ‘The dissonance is a challenge’, Ingmar acknowledges, ‘but I have realised the importance of connecting people at the forefront, building a critical mass and inspiring others to follow. Many people today are unwilling to change their behaviour and ways of life, but what they don’t realise is that a change in behaviour might actually make their own lives much better.’

Influencing leaders

For Ingmar there is no shortage of brilliant minds, ideas, solutions or talent – the issue is around connecting them so action can be communicated.

‘The power of many enables us to influence business and world leaders’, he tells us. ‘On a business level, if you don’t change today, you will most probably be out of business tomorrow. There is no business on a dead planet – and no future in fossil fuels.’

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