Samuel challenges you to “Zep it”!

Serial innovator Samuel Gordon came up with this smashing idea and was kind enough to share it with 6heads. And we, of course are kind enough to share it with you!  We’re also interested in your views for Sam on how he can grow this into a strong campaign for change… Let us know at

Sam introduces the concept here:

There is an easy way to make climate change campaigning more successful and fun.

Rather than encouraging people to cut their emissions, we should be encouraging them instead to “ZEP it!” – to replace the emitting objects they own with alternative products that release Zero Emissions at the Point of use (“ZEPs”).

Examples of ZEPs could include heat pumps, electric boilers or a lithium-ion battery for an electrically-powered bike. These emit no CO2 at the point they are used but they also emit no nitrous oxide, sulphur oxide or carbon particulates either. For the sake of this project, the amount of energy ZEPs use is irrelevant.

Why ZEPs? Well, if we adopt this approach, it becomes far easier for consumers to lead on tackling climate change. It is tough to do this when trying to cut emissions, because no matter how hard we try we will always be emitting indirectly via the electricity we use. Everyone has their hands dirty, so to speak, so it is tough to credibly convince other people to change.

The “ZEP it!” campaign is different though. Because you’re only responsible for what you own, becoming a role-model is a much faster process. Do you own any objects that emit at their physical point of use? No? Congrats! Under this approach you’re now guilt-free and can start persuading your neighbours and power company to ZEP it too.

The “ZEP it!” campaign is also easy to draw the public into. The key is focus on fun and convenience. For example, you could create brightly-coloured “ZEP it!” stickers for all the motorbikes in your office car-park then include riding directions to the nearest zero-emission replacements. Under this approach, the complex science and “doom and gloom” of emissions no longer matters – all that matters instead are the benefits of taking action!

The “ZEP it!” campaign is also easier to draw businesses into. The key is to focus on just five types of products. By replacing only their engines, boilers, furnaces, kilns and stoves, businesses will cut the world’s greenhouse gas emissions by around 85% and largely solve the problem. No-one needs to be demonised, and we can bypass the fossil fuels debate completely. Under this approach, our message to businesses is simple and positive: “Replace these five products and you’re mostly done!”

In fact, the “ZEP it!” campaign is easy for businesses to lead. The key is to aim for the single goal of bringing ZEPs to 100% market share. Because all of these five types of products exist in million- and billion-dollar markets, this goal creates a strong commercial incentive for companies to act quickly. The businesses who act first with ZEPs will capture the most market share. Under this approach, funding will be easier to find.

Finally, the “ZEP it!” campaign is also easier to draw governments into. The key is to focus on the benefits of ZEPs. Designing policy to increase these benefits will be far more popular than trying to enforce the costs of widespread cuts in emissions. Under this approach, it is easier for governments to look good when they support us. We’ll make progress faster!

All in all, the “ZEP it!” campaign is the simplest and most powerful way we can solve our climate change problem. Let’s get ZEPping!

Great idea Sam!


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