‘It’s the earth we all live in: we have to take care of it.’
How do young people feel about caring for the environment? How worried are they for the future? And if there’s one thing they’d urge us all to do, what would it be?
Baptists Together magazine chatted to a group of secondary school pupils about these issues
Click here to download the video to share with your church.
How would you respond to the questions we asked these students?
What are your thoughts on caring for the environment?
Protecting the environment is really important. It’s the earth we all live in: we have to take care of it. - Nerea
It’s where we live. If we destroy it, if we ruin the ozone layer by using things we shouldn’t, ultimately we are going to die. It’s important to look after it: it looks after us, it gives us a safe space to be. - Emily
I think we should all play a role in looking after the environment. It could be little things like recycling, picking up litter, or turning off our lights in our homes. - Molly
We should make sure the environment is cared for because the animals and wildlife that live there could die out if we don’t. - Alina
We need to protect it a bit more because the animals are being more affected than we are at the moment. - Caitlin
How do you change attitudes?
One of the best ways would be to show a success story. Think big - what would it look like if London became an emission-free zone? - Michael
There’s a need for more resources. Money is always a problem. A lot is dependent on how much funding there is. - Molly
I’m hopeful that electric cars will become more normal. It’s like when cars first started – not many people could afford them. But now everyone has them. - Nerea
What kind of things have you done in your own home?
We installed a motion sensor. It switches lights off automatically if it doesn’t detect any movement (which can be annoying…!) - Michael
My mum is a member of a rowing club. They were all using plastic cups. She’s got them to bring in their own cups. - Alina
We never use plastic bags when we go shopping – we always take our own. - Nerea
We use low energy light bulbs at home, and always try to turn the lights off. - Molly
What’s one thing you would advise everyone to do?
Don’t litter! There are bins everywhere. It’s so easy not to litter. But people can’t be bothered. - Molly
Use less plastic. There are websites that can help. - Nerea
For me it would be turning off the lights. It’s such a simple thing to do, and saves so much electricity. - Issy
Next time you go and get a coffee – keep the cup. Do that for a month. At the end of the month, see how many cups you have. Then go and buy a reusable one, because you can use that forever. That would massively cut down on how much you’re using. - Michael
Be aware of campaigns. A lot of people say they can make a difference in these small acts – that’s great, it really helps. But people don’t realise they can make a huge difference in signing petitions that campaign against environmental damage. It just takes a second. I’ve signed some petitions – not all have worked, but some have, and it feels really good to know you’ve contributed to making something better. - Emily
When you buy your first car, don’t ‘mod it’ by buying massive exhausts that make a huge noise. Firstly, it’s annoying and obnoxious; and secondly, it produces more emissions than a regular exhaust. Leave it – no one thinks it sounds cool! - Michael
How worried are you for the future?
I’m not too worried because the Government have just issued their 25 year plan, and with time and resources, we will get there. However, with the amount of plastic that’s in our seas, I’m wondering if the 25 years is too long and it will be out of control. - Molly
I’m quite worried. A lot of people still don’t understand the damage it’s doing. And those who do understand don’t want to do anything about it, they’d rather take the easier option. It might not be affecting them – but it’s likely to affect their children. It’s easier to ignore and move on with your life the way it was. - Emily
I’m half/half. People are doing things to stop it. But there are many people who just aren’t listening and don’t want to co-operate. I saw somewhere that there will be more plastic in the seas than fish. That is worrying. - Nerea
Because we are doing some things to try and sort it out, that’s good. But there are some people who just don’t try. It’s almost like they have given up. - Alina
I think we should try a bit harder, because we are doing things. But the ice is still melting. - Caitlin
I’m less worried. Five years ago, maybe, but today we’ve got more policies in place, like the 10p bags in supermarkets, which have made a difference. We’ve got shows like Blue Planet, which are more focused on the fact we are polluting the oceans. Go down a country road and you will see rubbish everywhere - hopefully that’s going to stop. - Michael
Our thanks to Alina, Caitlin and Nerea (Year 7), Emily and Michael (Year 9), Molly and Issy (Year 12) - students at Luckley House School in Berkshire - for sharing their thoughts