On the climate crisis, we can’t afford to look the other way
Michael Penney and Mike Swinn respond to Gaby Hinsliffs article about voters apparent disinterest in the threats facing our species and planet Gaby Hinsliff is right to draw attention to the lack of urgency about the perils facing us from climate change ( If swing voters were terrified of the climate crisis, ministers would take it seriously, 19 May ). One way to attract the attention of the public and politicians is for those campaigning about this issue to remind those who are grandparents that they could well be the last generation to have grandchildren. It seems likely that our grandchildren, as well as having to face up to the cost of healthcare, housing and the threat of AI and other new technologies, will also have to think seriously about starting families when faced with a world which is burning up and getting hotter day by day. High temperatures, floods, shortages of food and so on are hardly encouragement to bring more people into the world. It can only be hoped that, faced with a rapid decline in population, governments across the planet will take the urgent action to counter the threat in time. Michael Penney Dronfield, Derbyshire Gaby Hinsliffs article raises an interesting question: can we meaningfully gauge public priorities by newspaper page-view statistics? I suspect that its not as simple as that. People read online news for at least two reasons first to inform themselves about the state of the world, but also as a form of light entertainment in spare moments during the day. I am deeply concerned by the unfolding climate disaster, and the chasm between politicians promises and actions. I also agree with Gaby that much of the public is very uninformed about the topic. In no small part due to the Guardians coverage, I have been inspired enough to make many personal changes, including switching to electric vehicles, eating less meat, flying less and buying more used items. I write to MPs and speak about the topic with friends. However, I consciously limit my exposure to climate-related news keeping it to a few articles a day. I suspect many other people follow a similar principle. If we constantly expose ourselves to negative content, it can consume our thoughts. A happy medium exists between staying informed but avoiding being overwhelmed. Please keep up the excellent journalism. It can and does inspire many people to change. If celebrity gossip dominates the readership statistics, it doesnt indicate that humanity has no hope; its merely a different form of news consumption. Mike Swinn Coventry Have an opinion on anything youve read in the Guardian today? Please email us your letter and it will be considered for publication in our letters section.