Children’s letters to leaders inform new book


06-10-2021
Dear world leaders -plant and animals

Children worldwide have written to top politicians urging them to address the climate crisis.

Heartfelt letters from almost 100 primary school children from across the world urging their respective leaders to take more action to address the climate crisis have informed a new book aimed at a young audience, explaining how climate change affects our daily lives, how the world has responded over the past 10 years, and what it needs to do in the next 10 years.

Dear World Leaders has been launched by the Global Sustainability Institute (GSI) at Anglia Ruskin University (ARU) alongside publishing all the letters from the children (https://doi.org/10.25411/aru.14540628).

Dear World Leaders - foodThe book has been sent to leaders of the children’s home countries including the UK, India, USA, Australia, Russia, Hungary, Nigeria, Mexico, and Brazil, as well as leading politicians involved in the United Nations Conference of the Parties (COP26) being held in Glasgow from 31 October, inviting them to respond.

The letters provide an indication of how younger generations are already being affected by the climate crisis.

Emma, from the UK, wrote: “As I write this there are almost 100 flood warnings across the UK because of Storm Dennis, and yet my local city, Cambridge, is experiencing serious long-term drought.”

Rajeev, from India, wrote: “Rice is an essential part of our diet. Just a few years ago we could grow rice but now we aren’t able, which makes it difficult for our families to get proper nutrition.”

Beautifully illustrated by students from the BA (Hons) Illustration course at ARU, Dear World Leaders describes how climate change impacts a range of issues such as where we live, our jobs, and our food. It also includes lesson plans for young people.

The book has been published to mark the 10th anniversary of the GSI, which has carried out regular important and influential research in the field of sustainability. Children who were about the same age as the GSI were invited to send in their letters.

Professor Aled Jones, Director of the GSI at ARU, said: “The climate crisis is affecting people all over the world now, but unless radical action is taken the situation will worsen for generations to come.

“School children cannot yet vote but their voices need to be heard by our political leaders.”

Funding for the book was provided by the ESRC Centre for the Understanding of Sustainable Prosperity.

 

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Anglia Ruskin University (ARU)