The Climate Delusion Week

Niels de Fraguier
5 min readSep 30, 2023

September 29th, many neighbourhoods of New York City are flooded. A clear metaphor for our inaction — one week after Climate Week in the exact same city.

https://apnews.com/article/northeast-storm-rain-new-york-flooding-subway-a16ad4720eddd6c0f7ea3b761f414e80

We are Friday night and it is less than a week ago that I came back home after attending Climate Week NYC. For my first time at the event after boycotting conferences for more than 5 years, I got convinced to get there to spearhead the message of my recent book The Regenerative Enterprise — encouraging world leaders to be in service to life on Earth.

I spent ten days attending meetings, conferences, and talks that felt full of words and terribly empty of actions. From the UN headquarters to conference halls and networking events, the same feeling kept coming back to me: empty words in an era calling for urgent action.

Many of the ‘leaders’ taking on the stages are either corporates paying their tickets to participate in the show or individuals driven by the objective of feeling good about themselves doing ‘good for the world’. Let’s be clear, what we do today is not to feel good about ourselves but to deliver on the responsibility that has been given to us to be guardians of life in a world falling apart.

Many were the individuals attending the event to ‘celebrate’. How can we even think of celebrating the race we are losing against climate change and rising inequalities?

I couldn’t get my mind around it. I couldn’t even relax during this week with the image of New York in orange smoke still in mind — an event that has not even been mentioned once in the meetings I attended. Climate Week should have been approached with gravity and responsibility.

https://www.wsj.com/articles/smoke-air-quality-nyc-northeast-canadian-wildfires-6b5ffc01

If I had to summarise the week, it would be a quick review of 3points. The elements that follow are part of the reason why we are not moving fast enough to ensure a thriving future for our children and grandchildren.

Talk the walk
While many used nice phrases such as ‘walk the talk’, the reality is that the majority of events I attended were word soup. A ‘do what I say, don’t do what I do’ feeling all week long. The real need is not to talk once again about…

--

--

Niels de Fraguier

Author of The Regenerative Enterprise. Disrupting the status quo by challenging assumptions, practices, and conventional thinking. Top Writer on Sustainability