David Attenborough to leaders: Be bolder on tackling crisis

David Attenborough addresses world leaders at G7

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The naturalist and broadcaster, 95, met Sue Peachey and Marc Robson, 48, at Parliament yesterday to mark a year since the first UK-wide citizens’ assembly on ­climate change. Sir David said: “Scientists have been very clear on what’s at stake for mankind if we don’t act. “Our political leaders now need to lead and give people confidence that all the changes needed to deliver net zero are desirable and possible for all of us. “Parliament’s Climate Assembly has done a truly remarkable job of highlighting the high levels of public support for climate action up and down this country and given ­government and MPs an invaluable roadmap of how it can be done.”

Climate Assembly UK was ­commissioned by six parliamentary select committees and brought together 100 people ­representative of the UK population.

Sue, from Bath, Somerset, bought an electric vehicle after taking part in last year’s Climate Assembly, which brought together the public and ­scientists to discuss how to tackle global warming.

The retirement home boss, who backs the Daily Express Green Britain Needs You campaign, said: “I thought it was my public duty to put my name forward for the ­assembly. I didn’t really know ­anything about climate change.

“It was all new to me but I was willing to do my bit. It has changed my life. I absolutely recognise that climate change is real and things need to happen.”

Sue wants more people educated on global warming, adding that changes “must be done fairly”.

She added: “There’s still a lot of people who don’t really know what climate change is all about.

“I think people are willing to change as long as it is explained about why they’re being asked to.”

Marc, who works for British Gas, added: “I’ve got children, I’ve got grandchildren and I knew I wouldn’t be able to look them in the face if I did nothing for the environment.

“I was given the ­chance to possibly make a difference, however small, and if that happens, I know I tried.”

Other assembly members meeting Sir David included Tracey McIntyre and Sharon Lee.

The assembly’s final report supported frequent-flyer taxes and a ban on sales of new gas boilers and new petrol, diesel and hybrid cars by 2030-2035. It also advocated voluntary reductions in meat and dairy in diets, and ­planting and managing ­forests to soak up excess ­carbon emissions. Ministers are expected to outline their strategy for meeting the net-zero target ahead of crucial ­UN Cop26 climate talks in Glasgow in November.

  • To watch the citizens’ journey over the past year in the assembly, watch The People Vs Climate Change on BBC iPlayer.

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