Prince Charles’ climate change for dummies

Jacob Furedi

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Following the success of its collection of spoof kids books for adults, including ‘The Mid-Life Crisis’ and ‘The Hipster’, Penguin’s revamped Ladybird range has commissioned its funniest title yet, ‘Climate Change’, which is set to be co-authored by Prince Charles.

The book was pitched by Charles himself, who decried the absence of an accesible guide to the dangers of climate change. And so, the heir to the throne has kindly taken some time out from lobbying senior politicians to educate us plebs on the environment.

In keeping with Ladybird style, each page of the book will show a large picture with a few simple words below. Apparently the authors worked ‘very hard to make sure that each word did its job’ – just to make sure us little folk can understand what our clever Prince is saying. Given Charles’ previous claim that the current war in Syria was caused by climate change, this new book promises to be a gripping read.

It’s no secret that Charles is an environmentalist – he has repeatedly aired his concern that we are ruining the planet at our grandchildren’s expense. And it should come as no surprise that a member of the monarchy – a hangover from a time when self-rule was viewed with revulsion – would prefer the ‘natural’ order over humanity striving for more.

While the book is yet to be published, it’s safe to say that it will most likely tell us to stop doing X, stop using Y and stop eating Z. We will, once again, be told that human activity is a threat to our planet.

Perhaps this is an unfair judgement. Maybe Charles’ book will explain why we should embrace climate change. The book has been peer-reviewed by the Royal Meteorological Society, so presumably it will describe the advances scientists are making in the development of nuclear fusion. The authors might even provide us with some pictures explaining how fracking can provide us with a cheap and more energy-efficient source of gas.

But, of course, the book won’t do that. Because, no matter how many Ladybird books Charles writes on the matter, his instinctual reaction will always be against human progress. In this, he taps into a thoroughly mainstream sentiment. This is a shame. Because when it comes to tackling the perceived threat of climate change, it is our capacity to change the world around us that will provide the solution.

Jacob Furedi is a writer and student.

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