Climate Cafes – what are they?

“Great changes can start from small conversations.”

Climate cafes are so important as they provide a space to support and encourage us to have these conversations regarding – What can I do? What can my community do? What can my local authority do? What can the Scottish Government do? And what can we do globally? From Climate Café Pitlochry

The following information is taken from the Scottish Community Alliance website October 12th 2021

What is a Climate Café?

Climate Café is a space, for people to get together to talk and act on climate change. They are informal, inclusive spaces where everyone is welcome to join the conversation and get involved. Often they are local in their focus, connecting with wider climate action nationally and globally. Importantly, Cafes are apolitical and non-judgemental. In communities, work places or educational spaces, a pop up Climate Café may be a place that offers an opportunity to get together for a regular chat and update on climate matters.

Most Cafés choose to meet monthly for a couple of hours. Many Cafés like to bring in external speakers to inform the conversation and action. Some Cafés choose to do this every time, while others choose to have more time to chat. The chat in Climate Cafés often leads to exciting ideas, projects and action. They are a great place to feature and connect with local projects and initiatives, support new businesses and hear from others taking action. Each Climate Café will be unique to the people and place it is in.

What is it like to go along to a Climate Café?

Climate Cafés are relaxed and informal, so you should be able to just drop in, have a cup of tea, and a chat – just like any Café. Every Climate Café should feel really welcoming, open and inclusive to all. It is a space where you should feel informed, inspired and able to get involved.

A Climate Café is not really a meeting space for lots of papers and minutes or actions! The role of the Co-ordinator(s) at a Cafe is to ensure that everyone gets to contribute and the conversation moves through the topics people are interested in. Expect the chat to be wide ranging and solutions focused, with a positive focus on what we can do!

In lots of Cafés, a project or event idea may come out of Café chats. If so there might just be updates at Cafés, with separate meetings to progress the project. Those who choose to be involved in a project can be, while the Café continues to be a place for conversations.

Co-ordinators may take notes on what everyone would like to chat about at a future Café, ideas for speakers, information to send or a need for more tea and biscuits, but that’s about it! All Climate Cafés are responsible for providing a safe space to meet, and following current government guidance in relation to COVID 19.

Climate Cafés can play a valuable role in celebrating and connecting people to local climate action. Instead of competing with all the amazing climate action happening already, they create spaces to connect with, learn more about and join others. Invite inspiring individuals, local businesses or projects along to share their story!

Climate Cafés can be a great way to keep the climate chat and action going. Tackling the Climate Emergency is going to take us all, and together we can think bigger and smarter! Sharing news, ideas, resources, actions can generate new ideas and energy.

If you want to go along to a Climate Cafe, Eco Savvy is organising one on Tuesday 9th November at the Ormidale as part of the COP26 actions in Arran. See the post in this issue for more information about this event, and for future Climate Cafes keep an eye out on the Eco Savvy news or here at the Voice. 

To find out more about Climate Cafes, see the following websites and