Extinction Rebellion’s ‘Be a Good Ancestor’ campaign which took place in the High Street at 10am and finished at noon today (Saturday, November 25) was designed to encourage people to take small steps towards change so there is a future fit for their loved ones.
Dr Richard Sharp is part of Extinction Rebellion Scientists and Grandparents. He came up with the idea for the ‘Be a Good Ancestor’ campaign when attending Armistice Day at the GuildHall Square.
He said: “There was a two-minute silence for those who were killed in the First and Second World War, my parents and grandparents’ generation, and we think of them and what great ancestors they were and yet, we struggle to even change our lifestyles to save the generations who will follow us.”
The campaign calls for a climate pledge which does not have to be considerable, but collectively, all the pledges add up and help combat the crisis. This could be reducing the number of car journeys, limiting the number of flights, recycling more or buying local.
He said: “I have five grandchildren. I have watched all the numbers on the climate for the last 10-15 years and everything just keeps going up in the wrong direction and we are really not doing enough to stop it.
“We are aiming for net zero by 2050, and we really need net zero before that otherwise our children and great-grandchildren will pay the price. We had the hottest UK day last year, people died, and we had fires in London and that’s just the start. Our target is 1.5 degrees, and this all happened at 1.2 degrees.”
Dr Sharp does not believe that the central government is doing enough.
He added: “In 2015 they cancelled onshore wind and cancelled the programme to insulate houses. All the problems we have now, with the energy crisis, we could have had 2 million houses insulated.”
“Most people are concerned about the climate, and they expect the government to take the lead, but they don’t.”