In a number of countries worldwide, senior citizens have created or joined organisations that act on climate change issues in order to try to influence local, regional and national policies.
Recently, several European Grandparents for the Climate organisations have decided to create a cooperative network with the aim of exchanging information, knowledge and strategies while supporting actions across Europe. See European Grandparents for Climate Newsletter no. 1 – Sept. 2022.
Earlier attempts: New York 2014 / Paris 2015:
In September 2014, a group from GCC and the Canadian sister organization For Our Grandchildren joined the 400,000 strong People’s Climate March in New York, carrying our joint banner. Our two organizations issued a Statement to leaders of the world that also was published by UNFCCC in their Climate Change Newsroom. The Statement was later joined by several European grandparent groups, meeting i Paris november 2015:
INTERNATIONAL CONCERNED GRANDPARENTS call for a new moral leadership, giving priority to the safety of all our grandchildren and their right to a sustainable planet. Putting their best interest at the top of national and international political agendas will demonstrate solidarity between generations
The latest IPCC reports leave no doubt – the health of our planet is in grave jeopardy.
Our grandchildren must cope with the risk of uncontrollable global warming in a world ridden by famine, sickness, displacement and despair. This risk has greatly increased, yet international climate negotiations are stalled.
The search for new sources of fossil fuel grows. More fertile land is being stripped, precious water contaminated, and more habitats for animals and humans disrupted.
We know that most fossil reserves must remain in the ground if global warming of more than 2 °C is to be avoided. Consequently, coal must be phased out faster. Environmentally costly fossil fuel sources such as tar sands, coal seam gas and shale gas cannot be exploited. In the fragile High Arctic, where unique habitat and precious marine life must be protected and prioritized, oil exploitation must stop.
“Turning down the heat” for the sake of our grandchildren will require changed attitudes and sincere efforts to slow down consumerism in affluent societies. We need to recognize and adjust to the limits of the Earth’s resources. We must regard saving, caution and moderation as positive values – economically beneficial to both today’s and future societies.
As elders we acknowledge our time-honoured role as caretakers of the inheritance of future generations. We owe grandchildren everywhere sustainable living conditions, clean air and water, fertile and uncontaminated land, and a contained global climate.
In short, we owe them a planet Earth as wonderful as the one we have enjoyed.
Therefore we call upon concerned grandparents of the world to join us in efforts to force political leaders – national and international – to protect the rights and safety of children and all future generations.