We Stay on the Ground urges individuals to go flight-free with the aim of reducing emissions, changing the norms and thus laying the foundations for the policy solutions needed. We have been running a Flight Free campaign for several years, calling on people to take a collective flight-free year. You can read more about the campaign below, about why we are not running an annual campaign at the moment, and about our hopes for the future.
Flight Free 2019
In January 2018, we launched the Flight Free 2019 campaign with the aim of getting 100,000 people to collectively pledge to take a flight-free year in 2019. The pledge to take a flight-free year only became binding if we managed to reach the target of 100,000 people signing up. The aim of this approach was not to focus on the responsibility of the individual but to call for collective responsibility. And because signing up only became “binding” if we reached the target, people were guaranteed that their flight-free year would make a big difference, making it more motivating for anyone who doubts that their own actions can make a difference to join in. Another part of the aim was to motivate all those who signed up to also try to get more people to join – which many did. The Flight Free 2019 Facebook event was widely shared, reaching over 380,000 people, and there were also many people actively campaigning in various locations around the country. Although we didn’t reach our target of 100,000 people signing up – around 15,000 Swedes signed up – the campaign was a great success. It received a lot of media attention, which meant that we reached a large number of people with our message, both here in Sweden and in other countries.
Flight Free 2020
In early 2019, we launched the Flight Free 2020 campaign with the same approach as last year. It was also run in ten other countries and attracted media attention in some 20 countries around the world. Again, we didn’t reach the target of 100,000 – globally, around 26,000 people signed up – but we still consider the campaign a great success as it helped to change norms and to make many people around the world aware of the climate impact of flying.
Flight Free 2021 and 2022
For 2021, we decided not to keep the target of 100,000 pledges because we thought it would be difficult to achieve. The aviation debate stalled completely when the pandemic broke out, and as many people would be forced to take a flight-free year anyway because of it, it felt more difficult to campaign for a flight-free year. This year, the campaign was much less widespread, and globally around 10,000 people signed up, including 5,000 Swedes, which was also the case for 2022.
Flight Free 202X?
As we feel that a very important component of the Flight Free campaign was to have a high target of 100,000 pledgers, we have decided not to pursue the campaign on an annual basis at this time. However, we will of course continue to campaign for more people to go flight-free. We are also open to the idea of running a new Flight Free campaign with this target in the future, provided we get enough resources, both financially and in terms of volunteers. We are convinced that it would be perfectly possible to get 100,000 people to sign up to such a campaign, but to do so successfully we need to reach out to enough people. We therefore welcome suggestions on how such a campaign could be funded, and anyone interested in helping to run such a campaign is welcome to contact us. If we could get 100,000 people to sign up for a year without flying, it would attract a lot of attention worldwide and send a clear signal to our politicians that there are many of us ready for a strong climate policy.
Thanks to everyone who has taken a pledge!
We would like to thank all of you who participated in any of our Flight Free campaigns. By leading the way, you have helped to raise awareness of the climate impact of flying and to change norms around the world. As well as receiving a lot of media attention, the campaign has been featured in several books and various research studies, clearly demonstrating that it has had a huge impact – without you this would not have happened.
Let’s talk aviation!
More and more of us are choosing to live flight-free, and by daring to talk about it with those around us, we can together reach out to many more. Read more about our new campaign “Let’s talk aviation!” here.