As you’ve grown older, I’ve become increasingly aware that protecting you means more than ensuring your short-term safety. It also means ensuring that you’ll have a safe planet to live on.

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Linda Hutchins-Knowles
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To my precious children,

The day you were born, it was love at first sight. As we cradled you in our arms, your dad and I vowed to do everything in our power to protect you and help you grow up strong and healthy.

At first, that meant concrete things, like researching the safest car seats, baby-proofing the house, and buying organic food. As you’ve grown older, I’ve become increasingly aware that protecting you means more than ensuring your short-term safety. It also means ensuring that you’ll have a safe planet to live on.

Sometimes you wonder why I talk so much about climate change, why I bring you to lobby our Representatives, why we participate in climate marches and rallies. It’s because everything you depend on for survival—clean air, safe water, food security, peace and stability, protection from extreme weather—is threatened by the pollution and climate disruption caused by burning fossil fuels.

Here in California, we’re already experiencing severe drought, rising sea levels, and raging wildfires. And if humans continue to burn fossil fuels unabated, the future—your future—looks even bleaker.

But I’m not giving up hope. I’m doing everything in my power to help transition society onto a sustainable path. That means more than just reducing my own carbon footprint. It means speaking up, taking action, voting, mobilizing others, and demanding that our leaders implement policies that will drive a rapid and complete transition to clean energy.

We have all the technologies and policies (like putting a price on carbon) that we need to jettison fossil fuels and power our economies with clean, renewable energy instead. All that’s missing is the political will to implement them. And if you’re reading this thirty-five years from now, I hope that means that we found it!

For what’s at stake is more than just your survival. What’s at stake is the very survival of the human species, and countless other species. So I’m fighting for your future, for our future, and for the beautiful, fragile places I love—like Lake Tahoe and the redwood forests, the coral reefs and the Amazon rainforest. I hope they will still be here when you grow up—and that you and your grandchildren will have a habitable planet to live on.

Love always,
Your mom

Linda Hutchins-Knowles
San Jose, CA

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