Alan Taylor's Letter

To my grandson Coden,

When I was born World War 2 had just begun there was an urgent need for gas, coal, oil and food because most of Europe was occupied by Nazi forces and Great Britain stood alone. Most houses had coal fires and there was no central heating. We were self-sufficient in coal, gas was derived from processing coal and most of our food was grown here in the UK, oil, on the other hand, was supplied mostly from the Middle East. Little consideration was given to the harm our actions were doing to nature, we thought nature could take care of itself. The war was won thanks to our brave troops and those of the Commonwealth and the USA. The country had to borrow a lot of money to finance the war but we, the people, managed to pay it back over a long period of time. During the time after the war, the country and the people grew more wealthy and demanded a better life. This led to more houses being built, with central heating, more cars and so more oil was required, North Sea oil and gas was descovered so coal was no longer required in such large quantaties. Farming now needed more fertilizer and pesticides to meet the increasing need for cheap and plentiful food, life seemed good and still, we gave little concern for nature.

Then, slowly but surely, it became apparent that our actions were leading us into a very dangerous place with bees dying because of pesticides and Global Warming because of our dependence on fossil fuels. Forests were being cleared to provide crops for both human and animal foodstuff. Wild animal habitats were disappearing and so wild animals and humans were brought closer together, this led to humans catching viruses that had only hitherto affected wild animals.

What a mess we have made of our time here on Earth and so I'm sorry you will have to live with our legacy. I just hope and pray that the people and governments of the world will come to their senses soon and realise that we can't go on as we are. Unfortunately, there is a large lobby from the fossil fuel industry trying to persuade the government to continue exploring for oil and gas. We need to stop our dependence on fossil fuels and look to renewable forms of energy such as tidal, solar and wind. Did you know, it has been estimated, that there is sufficient energy falling on the Earth from the Sun in one day to provide all the energy needed for the whole earth for a year? all we need to do is capture just 0.3% of that energy. There is also the hope that hydrogen could also help provide part of the solution to the problem but this requires a change in investment and the will of the government. I hope for your sake and the sake of Earth that the government will see sense very soon.
All my Love Granddad.

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