Did my being in Paris make any difference to the outcome of COP21? Probably not – but what if a million people had converged on Paris and demanded change – that would surely have made a difference!

Thus, acting in concert with others can and does have an effect. Acting with others who share a vision of a different world – just as Martin Luther King declared “I have a dream…” We all need dreams – dreams that provide us with a glimpse of heaven – dreams that the world can be a better place!

In Paris, we too saw angels – the Climate Guardian Angels! The sight of these protesters from Australia was disarmingly benign, but hid a determination to confront industry and government, to abandon fossil fuels and adopt a carbon-free future. Angels are often the bearers of hard-hitting tidings, not just glad tidings!

Going to Paris certainly made a difference to me, and to my fellow cyclists. We had a deep sense of sharing of something meaningful, as much during the journey as when we were there in Paris. We were changed by the experience.

But what do we do with that experience? That is the challenge for all of us.

The signing of that historic deal in Paris was the easy bit! Now the hard work begins – of actually implementing change!.

Which is why we are cycling from Paris to Bonn. We want to keep up the pressure on national representatives to make the huge changes necessary for the sake of the planet and all species, not just humans.

We face an uncertain future – yet it is a future full of possibilities.

We stand on the brink of a new future – a bright, clean, carbon-free future. This is the kind of future I dream of – and it is a dream that was confirmed for me by those angels we saw in Paris!

Whether we will see any angels in Bonn, I do not know.

What I do know is that many people are converging on that city to pledge their solidarity with those of good will who are seeking nothing short of the salvation of the planet.


Euan McPhee, Climate Vision Cyclist                                         26 October 2017.