Opinion

Read Lord John Bird's FT letter calling for us to consider future generations

The Big Issue founder's Future Generations Bill is currently making its way through the House of Lords. In a letter published in today's FT, he is backed by 37 peers in his bid to make a better future for the generations that will live in it

Future Generations Bill
Yuval Harari is right to ask us to plan for the long-term as we think about what kind of planet we will inhabit after COVID-19 (The world after coronavirus, Life & Arts, FT Weekend, 21 March). The pandemic requires immediate global action, and governments are now responding with emergency measures to cope during this escalating crisis.
Crucial though these measures are, we must not lose sight of addressing the longer-term risks – the climate emergency, unchecked technological change and future pandemics – which Toby Ord tells us add up to a one in six chance that human life won’t see the century out (When things fall apart, Life & Arts, FT Weekend, 21 March).
Lord Bird’s Future Generations Bill is the UK’s opportunity to systematically address these issues. It passed its second reading in the Lords on 13 March and now moves to committee stage. On 24 March, Caroline Lucas MP will also present a cross-party case for a UK Future Generations Act to transform how we think, plan and budget by embedding sustainability at the heart of policymaking.
The post-Brexit era offers a chance for us to weave the golden thread of long-term thinking into our communities, businesses and governments. Wales is pioneering this approach, with their Future Generations Commissioner and preventative budgeting, and now is the time for other nations to follow.
The eyes of future generations are upon us. Let’s be the good ancestors our descendants deserve. Let’s act today for tomorrow, and work together to level up opportunity between current and future generations.
Lord Bird (Crossbench)
Lord Aberdare (Crossbench)
Baroness Afshar (Crossbench)
Baroness Andrews (Labour)
Lord Balfe (Conservative)
Baroness Bennett of Manor Castle (Green)
Baroness Benjamin (Liberal Democrat)
Baroness Blackstone (Labour Independent)
Baroness Blower (Labour)
Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth (Conservative)
Lord Browne of Ladyton (Labour)
Lord Cashman (Labour)
Lord Bishop of Coventry
Lord Clement-Jones (Liberal Democrat)
Lord Collins of Highbury (Labour)
Lord Crisp (Crossbench)
Lord Giddens (Labour)
Lord Hastings of Scarisbrick (Crossbench)
Lord Howarth of Newport (Labour)
Lord Hunt of Chesterton (Labour)
Lord Hylton (Crossbench)
Baroness Jones of Moulsecoomb (Green)
Lord Judd (Labour)
Lord Mackay of Clashfern (Conservative)
Baroness Massey of Darwen (Labour)
Lord Kennedy of Southwark (Labour Co-operative)
Baroness McGregor-Smith (Conservative)
Baroness Miller of Chilthorne Domer (Liberal Democrat)
Lord Newby (Liberal Democrat)
Lord Bishop of Oxford
Baroness Parminter (Liberal Democrat)
Lord Randall of Uxbridge (Conservative)
Baroness Tyler of Enfield (Liberal Democrat)
Baroness Uddin (Non-affiliated)
Baroness Watkins of Tavistock (Crossbench)
Lord Wigley (Plaid Cymru)
Baroness Wilcox of Newport (Labour)
Lord Young of Cookham (Conservative)

Support the Big Issue

For over 30 years, the Big Issue has been committed to ending poverty in the UK. In 2024, our work is needed more than ever. Find out how you can support the Big Issue today.
Vendor martin Hawes

Recommended for you

View all
The Gathering creator: 'It's class, even more than ethnicity, blocking fair representation on TV'
Eva Morgan and Sonny Walker in The Gathering
Helen Walsh

The Gathering creator: 'It's class, even more than ethnicity, blocking fair representation on TV'

How a dreary trip to a travel agent became an escapade of exotic birds and celebrity musicians
A parrot
Sam Delaney

How a dreary trip to a travel agent became an escapade of exotic birds and celebrity musicians

Tories want to paint disabled people as 'benefit cheats'. Is Labour really any better?
Mikey Erhardt

Tories want to paint disabled people as 'benefit cheats'. Is Labour really any better?

We can make the four-day working week a reality – and make it work for everyone. Here's how
Andrew Fennell

We can make the four-day working week a reality – and make it work for everyone. Here's how

Most Popular

Read All
Renters pay their landlords' buy-to-let mortgages, so they should get a share of the profits
Renters: A mortgage lender's window advertising buy-to-let products
1.

Renters pay their landlords' buy-to-let mortgages, so they should get a share of the profits

Exclusive: Disabled people are 'set up to fail' by the DWP in target-driven disability benefits system, whistleblowers reveal
Pound coins on a piece of paper with disability living allowancve
2.

Exclusive: Disabled people are 'set up to fail' by the DWP in target-driven disability benefits system, whistleblowers reveal

Cost of living payment 2024: Where to get help now the scheme is over
next dwp cost of living payment 2023
3.

Cost of living payment 2024: Where to get help now the scheme is over

Strike dates 2023: From train drivers to NHS doctors, here are the dates to know
4.

Strike dates 2023: From train drivers to NHS doctors, here are the dates to know