My particular concerns are stewardship of the world for the benefit of future generations, and a more equitable distribution of wealth – both locally and worldwide.
At school in the 1960s, I was already aware of the threat of future global warming caused by rising levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide (I had an inspirational physics teacher, Philip Titchmarsh, who had introduced me to the works of Svante Arrhenius and Milutin Milanković). At that time, it seemed to me that replacing coal with nuclear power was the answer to the problem.
In 1967, in a series of UK-wide competitive examinations and interviews, I won one of four student scholarships with the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA). Two of us went to Queen Mary College (QMC), London University, to study on what was then the only undergraduate course in Nuclear Engineering in the country. Over the next three years, during my summer breaks, I spent a total of six months on various projects at different UKAEA research sites. From my studies and experience on UKAEA sites, I gradually came to the conclusion that nuclear power is a really bad idea. (For more on this, see Nuclear Engineering – a bit of personal history.)
As a well-informed opponent of nuclear power, I’ve regarded it as incumbent upon me to ensure that I remain well-informed. I’m no less concerned about climate change than I was in the 1960s – more in fact – but now I know that nuclear power is no solution. It inevitably introduces very serious additional hazards without contributing much to solving the main problem – hazards not only in the here and now, but which will persist for many generations after the last nuclear power station closes down, and which increase with every unit of electrical energy produced. There are sensible alternatives: see Energy Matters.
I have a head full of stories, and love writing – see Fiction (I also write other stuff).
I’m retired, after a very varied career – see my curriculum vitae. (There’s a bit of other more random information about me personally here).
I enjoy designing and making all sorts of things from the microscopic to the mahoosive, especially making use of salvaged materials – see DIY.
I love travelling – Recounts and Photographs have some of my travel stories and photographs, amongst other things.
I was the Green Party candidate for South East Cambridgeshire (where I’ve lived since 1992) in the 2015 UK General Election – didn’t win (it’s a safe tory seat) but did at least save the £500 deposit by getting over 5% of the vote (almost four times what we got in this constituency at the 2010 election).
Here’s a video we made for The People’s Politics, a group encouraging young people to take an interest in politics: Why you should vote Green, here’s East Cambridgeshire Green Party’s self-description: About Us, and here I was speaking at a hustings. Finally, this was my election leaflet.