The adventures of a group of DC Thomson journalists travelling from John O’Groats to Glasgow in an electric van for COP26 have been captured in a mini-documentary.
Writers from The Courier and The Press and Journal drove the van across their titles’ circulation areas.
They reported on local climate stories and recorded their readers’ views on the climate crisis to coincide with COP26.
Both DC Thomson daily titles published the joint 30 minute documentary on their websites on Sunday morning, marking the end of the international climate conference.
What do people really think about the climate crisis?
The P&J and Courier journalists met and interviewed scores of people worried about the planet during the climate crisis road trip.
They included a heavy metal (and electric vehicle) loving reverend in Inverness and a young Dundonian so worried about the crisis they had decided not to have children.
The writers also spoke to some of Scotland’s leading experts in how to hit net zero.
That included a professor in Scotland’s largest peat bog in Caithness to protestors at the gates of the petrochemical plant Mossmorran in Fife.
The journey ended in Glasgow. There, Scottish Government minister Patrick Harvie listened to what people in DC Thomson circulation areas had to say about the climate crisis.
Videographer Blair Dingwall worked with the team throughout.
He captured the high and lows of a journey that always remained one broken charging point from disaster.
‘Unforgettable’ experience on the climate crisis road trip
Press and Journal environment journalist Kieran Beattie started the trip in John O’Groats.
He said: “It’s an experience I’m never going to forget.
“We began with low expectations over how engaged people would be about the climate crisis. But we soon discovered people were switched on to the problems wherever we visited and had plenty to say.
“As someone who has never driven an automatic vehicle before – never mind an electric van – it was a huge challenge navigating across the country, charge point to charge point.”
Video journalist Blair Dingwall, who works for both The Courier and The Press and Journal, said he enjoyed being part of the project.
— Blair C Dingwall (@C_BDingwall) October 30, 2021
“I’ve worked really hard to capture the road trip. It was a great way to bring this crucial issue to life in a new and interesting way.
“It was an ambitious piece of work and it was great to watch the journalists throw themselves into it.
“I marched up hills to watch our writers plant trees. I followed them into peat bogs, wildlife enclosures, harbours and hill sides.
“But most of all it was a pleasure to keep the camera rolling as people all over the country shared their hopes and fears on the climate crisis a key moment for Scotland and the world.”