Action: Write a letter to your local paper

Use your local paper as a way of reaching others with environmental concerns

Today’s action encourages the sharing of environmental insights and perspectives in your local community. What are the issues affecting your local area. See them? Struggle with them? Feel driven to do something about them?

Person writing

Why not write a letter to your local paper?

Why is this important?

When you sit down to coffee and a news catch-up, it’s likely that one or more snippets will get your inner environmentalist fuming! The energy behind that frustration, sadness or even anger can be a powerful force for change. And one pathway to communicate a solution for positive environmental change is to write directly to the Editor of your local paper.

Chances are, other folks out there are having similar news experiences as well.

So let’s build conversation, let’s build sharing and resourcing around ways to affect positive change in our communities. Let’s take action!

What to do

Grab your notepad or computer and create a draft. To help get you started and get some words on that blank page, try these tips:

  • Start with a greeting: To the Editor (or, if you do know their name, use it instead).
  • Get the reader’s attention: Use an opening sentence that immediately lets the reader know what you’re writing about and why they should keep reading.
  • In other words – introduce your point / argument.
  • Then explain and back up your point with (reputable) evidence showing why this issue is important: facts and statistics are great here too.
  • Clearly state your opinion on any possible solutions to remedy this issue and include any evidence or research you have found supporting these solutions.
  • Make sure to highlight the benefits these solutions have on people and the environment and point out those especially that are free or easy to implement.
  • Avoid an angry rant though – that can be offputting.

Dear Editor

I am writing in response to your recent article about plans to build flats on the old recreation ground. I believe this would be detrimental and I don’t believe all the implications have been considered by the council … … …

  • Sign off: Finish your letter with your name and contact details (not for publishing but for following up with you if needed).

For the best chance of having your letter published, check it for typos and that your message is clear. Your letter should clearly:

  • Describe the local environmental issue that is affecting you and your community
  • Explain what you would like to do to help / what others could do to help
  • Suggest how the problem could be avoided in the future.

Ready to send? Then do so! Good on you for taking action on an issue close to your heart.

What to write about

Types of issue/concern you might wish to write about include:

  • Noise pollution
  • Litter
  • Wildlife or plant-life in your area
  • Planning decisions
  • Pollution hotspots
  • Local impacts of national/international issues

Take Action

Taking action in this way is a powerful way to spread the word on important local environmental issues. So, why not start a conversation today by writing a letter to your local paper and be part of opening up conversations about solutions.

This article is based on one originally contributed in 2021 to our parent project “365 Actions” by Jasmin Harrison in Australia
Insta: @word_wizardry
Twitter: @wizardryword

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