UHI Shetland - Open the door to your future
Saturday 22 June 2024
 16.3°C   WSW Gentle Breeze
Ocean Kinetics - The Engineering Experts

News / Climate change is in our children’s hands

Meteorologists Alex Hill and Heather Reid at the centre of media attention on Thursday - Photo: ShetNews

TWO former TV weather presenters said they had faith the younger generation help sort out the world’s climate problems during a visit to Shetland on Thursday.

Heather ‘The Weather’ Reid and the Met Office’s chief adviser to the Scottish government Alex Hill were the stars at Shetland Aerogenerators’ first climate conference Change.

Reid and Hill discussed climate threats with Shetland’s secondary school children following a screening of the movie Chasing Ice on Thursday, with a second planned on Friday.

They are also hosting a question and answer session at Mareel on Thursday night, starting at 7pm with the showing of the film Thin Ice.

Responding to climate change sceptics, Hill said he had no doubt that man’s actions were having a detrimental impact on the world’s climate.

“Ninety seven per cent of reputable climate scientists think it is the human output that made the difference. Scepticism is required for good science, denial isn’t,” he said.

“Science develops because we learn. This is still a learning process and will be for quite some time.”

Reid added that one area where scientists were adding new knowledge almost on a daily basis were the oceans.

“Two thirds of the earth is covered by oceans, it has a capacity to absorb carbon dioxides, it has the capacity to absorb and to release heat,” she said.

“We still have a lot to learn about how the oceans work and what impact that has on our lives, but it is becoming apparent that they are a crucial part of the jigsaw.”

She said she was “amazed” at how technology savvy the younger generation was, and that gave her hope.

“Young people are well ahead of us in embracing technology and communication. They have awareness about the rest of the world and about our responsibilities, which I never had when I was their age.

Become a supporter of Shetland News


“I have certainly seen that in Shetland too, so I am quite optimistic about the next generation.”

Hill added: “These kids think much more widely than I ever did at that age. It took me 40 years to reach the breadth of knowledge some of these kids have.

“The important thing for me is that they recognise the interdependencies in the world in a way that we never did when we were young.”

He said that even though Scotland’s only produced 1/700th of the world’s carbon emissions, it was influential because of the action it was taking on the issue.

“That is a fantastic place to start from, and perhaps two generations from now people looking back will be able to say ‘we’ve solved the problem’ – that’s what I hope for.”

Shetland Aerogenerators director Angus Ward said the company wanted to encourage people to engage with one of the biggest issues of modern times.

As part of the event they commissioned a web-based app which shows how Shetland is shrinking with rising sea levels. The app is available at: http://changeshetland.com/

They also commissioned Lerwick textile artist Jo Jack who has created Where 2 Waves Meet, a visual arts project she hopes to take to local schools and youth clubs over coming months.

You can find out more about the project at: www.facebook.com/ChangeShetland

Become a supporter of Shetland News

Shetland News is asking its many readers to consider start paying for their dose of the latest local news delivered straight to their PC, tablet or mobile phone.

Journalism comes at a price and because that price is not being paid in today’s rapidly changing media world, most publishers - national and local - struggle financially despite very healthy audience figures.

Most online publishers have started charging for access to their websites, others have chosen a different route. Shetland News currently has  over 600 supporters  who are all making small voluntary financial contributions. All funds go towards covering our cost and improving the service further.

Your contribution will ensure Shetland News can: -

  • Bring you the headlines as they happen;
  • Stay editorially independent;
  • Give a voice to the community;
  • Grow site traffic further;
  • Research and publish more in-depth news, including more Shetland Lives features.

If you appreciate what we do and feel strongly about impartial local journalism, then please become a supporter of Shetland News by either making a single payment or monthly subscription.

Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.



Subscribe to a selection of different newsletters from Shetland News, varying from breaking news delivered on the minute, to a weekly round-up of the opinion posts. All delivered straight to your inbox.

Daily Briefing Newsletter Weekly Highlights Newsletter Opinion Newsletter Life in Shetland Newsletter

JavaScript Required

We're sorry, but Shetland News isn't fully functional without JavaScript enabled.
Head over to the help page for instructions on how to enable JavaScript on your browser.

Your Privacy

We use cookies on our site to improve your experience.
By using our service, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy.

Browser is out-of-date

Shetland News isn't fully functional with this version of .
Head over to the help page for instructions on updating your browser for more security, improved speed and the best overall experience on this site.

Interested in Notifications?

Get notifications from Shetland News for important and breaking news.
You can unsubscribe at any time.

Become a supporter of Shetland News

We're committed to ensuring everyone has equitable access to impartial, open and quality local journalism that benefits all residents.

By supporting Shetland News, you play a vital role in ensuring we remain a pivotal resource in supporting the community.

Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.