Letter to a Grandchild…

Beryl Moppett from the Diocesan Birmingham Climate Action Group has sent us their ‘Letter to a Grandchild’ with an article, published ahead of the Climate change talks taking place in Paris at the end of November.

Envelope with letterMy dear Grandchild,

By the time this letter is of interest to you I expect I shall no longer be around. What sort of a planet will I have left behind? Or, what’s more to the point, what sort of a world will you be able to pass on to your children and grandchildren?

There are times when I fear for you. Already the seas and the forests are under threat. Island and coastal communities are disappearing and the poorest farmers are unable to cope with unpredictable weather.   I hear the scientists predict temperatures rising, droughts, floods and hurricanes, with large parts of the world becoming uninhabitable by the time you get to my age.

That’s if we carry on burning coal, gas and oil, putting too much carbon into the atmosphere. But we don’t have to do it. There is another way. And I have seen it start. My neighbours’ house is so well insulated they hardly need any heating at all. There are solar panels in the wilds of Africa or flood-plains of Bangladesh, giving light and power, charging radios and mobiles, where there has never been a grid. So much can be done over the internet now that I hope we won’t need to travel unnecessarily.

Our world can stay wonderful. But it won’t be unless we act. Yes I mean my generation because yours may be too late. I don’t want your grandchildren saying to you: “Why did they let the world come to this?”

I wonder what you will write when you’re as old as me?

Your Grandfather


So, fellow Grandparents, what can we do? As William Wilberforce wrote: “You may choose to look away but you can never say again that you did not know.”

So, join with others, tell your friends, get involved with at least one of the following:

  1. Take part in a local event: join the Interfaith Pilgrimage on the eve of the Paris summit, Saturday 28 November 7.00 pm departing St Martin’s in the Bull Ring, walking to the Peace Hub in Bull Street for an interfaith vigil starting at 7.30.
  2. Find out about what is happening in Paris: join the great March for Climate Justice in London on November 29th. Many people from local churches will be going. Booking details for how to get there by coach http://www.peacehub.org.uk/2015/11/04/coach-to-climate-justice-march-london/
  3. Lobby your MP so that he or she understands the need to act now for the future for our grandchildren. Online contact is easy and immediate on writetothem.com. By letter, it’s just: House of Commons, London SW1A 0AA
  4. Get something going at Church Start a discussion based on the Church of England’s climate change document, ‘Shrinking the Footprint’ shrinkingthefootprint.org  

Or read Birmingham Diocese resources on our partnership with Malawi, where this year a gift of £85 bought enough solar power for a whole class of schoolchildren to do their homework after dark.

  1. Pray and change join ‘Pray and Fast for the Climate’ on December 1st. And of course, think more about making lifestyle changes :
  • substitute one regular car journey with walking or busing
  • eat one less meat meal a week
  • change to a green energy supplier
  • plan a UK holiday rather than one that involves flying



We are old, sometimes wise and maybe a bit richer in time or cash. AND we will have an answer when our grandchild asks us, ‘What did you do to save the world?’

(Written by a group of local Anglicans: Birmingham Climate Action Group. For further information please contact Diane Littler dlittler2.0@gmail.com)





12th Nov 2015 Posted in: News by Stella Jennings 0

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