Prince William has decided he can no longer stay silent on the issue of climate change. Speaking on the BBC’s Newscast podcast, the Duke of Cambridge expressed his concern about the rise in climate anxiety in young people. The Prince told presenter Andrew Fleming it would be an “absolute disaster” if Prince George – his eldest son – was left having to discuss the issue in 30 years when he fears it would be too late to act.

Is he right? Well, his concerns about the future of our climate do indeed appear to be impacting the mental health of the next generation. ‘Eco-anxiety’ or chronic fear of environmental doom, is having a disproportionate effect on the young. According to a 2020 survey published in the British Medical Journal, 57 percent of children are distressed about the state of the environment.

Rather than just lazily blame this on young and naive ‘woke’ students who lack the mental fortitude of their second world war forebears, we should take the claim seriously. After all, mental illness is a serious psychological issue and one that merits close inspection. As adults, we should try and look at this from a child’s perspective and see what they see.