A Grandma fighting to protect her offspring, Tina Rothery is a force to be reckoned with. I was privileged to catch a few minutes out of her busy schedule at the recent Greenbelt Festival.
When this Grandma heard that fracking was coming to her Lancashire town, she decided she had to do something. Fracking causes earthquakes, scaring people in their homes. It releases greenhouse gasses, contributing to the climate breakdown. Its pollutants destroy the local environment. When Tina looked into this, she was shocked by oil industry practices and collusion.
Tina’s companions call themselves The Anti-Fracking Nanas. They do what any grandparent would do - defend their offspring. Tina tells me “We are lucky. We will get to live our natural lifespans and die of old age. Our children may not get the chance. That is why I campaign”. I am shocked at this stark message from a Granny. Unless we act, then within the lifespan of my children, temperatures will be 4°C higher, and sea levels 2m higher and rising. This will devastate food production and coastal communities. The United Nations warns of two hundred million climate refugees.
The Nanas have been peacefully protesting at the Cuadrilla site in Lancashire for over 1000 days, together with residents and campaigners, monitoring traffic and seismic events, and alerting the public to the truth of what is happening. Tina says anyone can get involved – be it actively impeding the work, or just sitting knitting, or supplying tea and cake. Lancashire is her ‘patch’, and fracking is what needs fighting there. However her concerns are global – the extinction of species, destruction of the climate and the futures of all our children.
Tina looks for the good in everybody, she tries to find this kernel in whoever she speaks to. She hopes to explain to them the reason she protests, and hopes to persuade them to act. As a Grandmother she is indefatigable in fighting for a decent world for her children and grandchildren.
If you’re inspired by Tina’s example, why join the climate strike in Exeter on 20th September. It’s not just for the kids.