Sophie Howe is a public servant with a particularly tricky constituency. The people she represents are remote and unresponsive and they never show up to voice an opinion or tell her if she’s doing a good job.
They don’t even vote. That’s because they haven’t yet been born. Howe is the world’s first – and only – future generations commissioner with statutory powers. She’s there to represent the unborn citizens of Wales.
There is no shortage of issues to champion. So many of today’s crises – climate, insects, water, population growth – threaten calamity not for the people currently on the planet but for their descendants. The political trope about “our children and our children’s children” has never felt so urgent.
Other countries have also toyed with novel governance mechanisms that allow for the voice of future generations to be heard, with Israel, Hungary and Canada notable examples.
Read the full story by Oliver Balch….