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Too co 2nservative


I read with interest your comment on civil engineering and environmental matters (NCE 20 January) and the two subsequent letters. I wholeheartedly agree that we are not thinking big enough or global enough.

Maybe a few more roads in the UK are neither here nor there in the global picture but they most definitely demonstrate that as a nation we are not taking the issue seriously.

We can, and must, do far more to reduce CO2 emissions and every engineer in this country should make a personal and professional effort in this direction.

Unfortunately sustainable development' appears simply a new buzz-word that everyone uses but no-one really acts upon. By now, we should all be aware that the UK consumes three times its global fair share of non-renewable resources and this must be reduced urgently.

It requires a massive effort, and I agree that engineers are essential to this task. But they must be forward looking - the past is not a good guide to the future. Humanity as a whole is already destroying the planet faster than it can recover.

Perhaps we should start to only harness the forces of nature within their evident limits and ensure an equitable share for all human societies.

How quickly would this help deliver a more sustainable and equitable future for all?

Colin P K Sherwood (M), principal consultant, Mott MacDonald, 10 Clifton Place, York YO30 6BJ

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