04.10.2019
Dear Greta: Push to Reset the World

If we had a school kid in our house, let´s name him Tom, these days he might write a letter like this to Greta Thunberg.

 

Dear Greta,

How are you? You must be very busy these days, since I see you a lot on YouTube and TV. To be honest, I envy you a little bit. You seem to travel the world and meet so many important people. Recently, you threw a grim face to president Trump. I saw the picture. It is so great that you want to save the world. However, there are so many things that I do not understand. I hope you do not mind if I share my questions with you. You seem to be pretty smart, certainly much smarter than me. My daddy, I belief, is also pretty smart. But a lot of what he says does not fit to what you say, which confuses me totally. And he also says that he feels so sorry for you, since you must be setup and staged by others. Hopefully, you will not suffer from this in the long run. I hope so, too, if this is true.

It is about the money 

“Everybody can make a difference!”, my daddy likes to say. I guess that is also what you want to do in your way. Save the world from being destructed, because we all use too many resources. My grand-grandpa told me stories about how they lived in poverty when he was a child. I actually feel very fortunate to have a heated house, new clothes, enough to eat, and also parents that drive me to music lessons, or sports. Many kids on our planet cannot enjoy these privileges. If we look to Africa, or India: many of the kids there also would like to enjoy some of our privileges, like schools or new clothes. But how? If those children also ask for schools, transportation and heating (or most probably, they would rather enjoy air conditioning, since it is not so cold in their countries), how should that be accomplished? Who will pay for solar based energy supplies in these countries? The people there are so poor. So, yes, it seems to be about money again. Are people in Sweden willing to wire money to Africa for support? I do feel like the people in my country are not so excited about this idea. How do you think can we solve this problem?

 

Where to send the old batteries?

I am also confused about what to do with cars. I like our car. In our country there are big discussions about pollution in cities. And that all cars must become electric. My friend Lisa told me yesterday that her daddy will lose his job. Some cities have even banned Diesel cars from entering downtown. Crazy. Because car makers are unclear about the future of combustion engines, some managers in her daddy´s company decided to close the factory. They are making some parts for engines. Don´t know what exactly. And he is going to lose his job next year. Is this because of your speeches? Lisa is concerned now if they still will have the money for her horseback riding lessons. Maybe they will need to move away to find new work. I do not like this idea. My daddy says that the discussion about electric cars is too much emotional. People should be thinking more on facts and not rush out of one problem, into another one, just because it is fashionable to beat on one horse. Diesel cars are not so bad either, he says. They use less fuel. He also says that the batteries in cars will lead to big problems in the long term, since it is not easy to recycle them. This is much different with engines, he says. I don´t know. How do you view this problem? You are driving around in an electric car I have read, and you certainly have a better picture than me. Maybe you will start a battery recycling company in Sweden one day, then we can send all the waste batteries to you?

 

It would be nice to just push a button

It is always about the best compromise! There is no button to reset the world.” is one of the favorite quotes of my daddy. Maybe, we have to seek more for these compromises, rather that blaming people. To be honest: I did not really like that you were blaming another generation for stealing our future the other day. I think we can do a lot also by ourselves. On how we travel; on how we use public transportation; on how often we buy new smart phones and how we get dressed; also on how we are getting educated better. Actually, I am not participating in the “Fridays for Future” demos. Many of my friends do. I rather study. I want to become an engineer to better understand what is going on. And I want to find best compromises and better technology. This is my dream of the future. Maybe I can also contribute a little bit to making this world a better place, since we cannot just push a button. It would be nice, though.

I cannot make passionate speeches to world leaders, like you do, to make a difference. And my parents cannot take the time to drive me around. They need to work and earn money, they say. Maybe you have some answers for me. I know, you are very busy travelling the world.

I wish you the very best!

Greetings from Bavaria,

Tom


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