TEDxStormont COUNTDOWN returns to find solutions and answers to the Climate Emergency

TEDxStormont Countdown is set to return this autumn as a part of TED’s global initiative to champion and accelerate solutions to the climate crisis, turning ideas into action.

TEDxStormont Countdown is due to take place in November 2021 to coincide with the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow. The COP26 summit aims to accelerate action towards the goals of the Paris Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.

In the run up to the Countdown event, TEDxStormont will host a series of online and in-person initiatives and campaigns to encourage conversations about climate change across Northern Ireland with a focus on five core themes – energy, nature, food, materials, and transport.

In the first session, TEDxStormont is to host Shaping Our Electricity Future: Have Your Say which will see passionate climate activists take part in an online event focused on reimagining the electricity grid so that it can deliver a clean electricity future. Experts from SONI, the company which runs Northern Ireland’s electricity grid, will put their plans to the group for insights and challenge.

Taking place on 25 May, the virtual session, hosted by an actress and comedian Nuala McKeever will be an opportunity for attendees to contribute to the consultation and play their part in creating a grid which delivers world-leading levels of clean electricity.

The event will also hear from young climate campaigner Anna Kernahan, and Sara McCracken, RSPB NI’s Head of Fundraising and Communications will introduce RSPB’s Artist of the Year competition. The charity with the support of TEDxStormont will be calling for artists of all ages to use their skills to illustrate their vision of a nature rich and climate safe future for Northern Ireland. The competition aims to give a platform to these voices and encourage politicians to match their words with action.

Curator of TEDxStormont Countdown, Eva Grosman said:

“The Countdown initiative is the ideal opportunity for Northern Ireland’s climate change and environmental leaders from a range of sectors to join together to discuss and action the key solutions that will prevent further damage to our environment.

“TEDxStormont Countdown’s aim is to highlight, through open discussion, the important issues such as food, nature, energy, materials, and transport, that are having major impacts on our environment.

“TEDxStormont Countdown live is set to return in November as part of the TED Countdown which will see global leaders of climate action join together to highlight the major challenges and solutions to the core climate issues. In the run up to the COP26 in Glasgow,

TED Countdown will raise even more awareness of the climate crisis and will provoke our leaders in Government and beyond to think ahead to what must be done to save the planet for good.”

Natasha Sayee, Head of External Communications and Stakeholder Engagement at SONI said:

“Shaping Our Electricity Future is SONI’s direct response to the climate crisis and is fundamental to Northern Ireland’s ambitions of reaching at least 70% electricity from renewable sources by 2030. The move to clean electricity will affect everyone in Northern Ireland, and we want to engage with the public to hear their opinions on how best to move forward ensuring we meet the targets and respond to the Climate Crisis.

“We are thrilled to be partnering with TEDxStormont Countdown once again to highlight solutions and big ideas to the changing way we work in order to protect the planet. We want Northern Ireland’s electricity system to enable and support the climate emergency response. We are stepping up to do this and through our partnership with TEDxStormont we urge the public to join and help us inform how we can all move forward in a greener, cleaner society.”

Sara McCracken, Head of Fundraising and Communications at RSPB NI said:

“Northern Ireland is waking up to the nature and climate emergency and we are pleased to see important legislation such as the Climate Change Bill moving through the Assembly, as well as our participation in the upcoming COP26 event.

“TEDxStormont Countdown is a platform for Northern Ireland’s leading environmentalists and activists share ideas and thoughts on what needs to be done to protect the planet. Last year’s TEDx Countdown saw vibrant discussions and thought-provoking proposals exchanged on how to be kinder to our planet, and what actions are required in the global effort to affect this needed change.”

“We look forward to this year’s TEDx Countdown, especially the unveiling of the RSPB NI Artist of the Year, which will see incredible works of art that capture a future vision of nature and why it must be preserved.”