THIS week, Aylesbury MP David Lidington writes exclusively to Bucks Free Press readers:

The recent climate change demonstration by school pupils has caused controversy. While it would have been better had this taken place at the weekend or in half-term, I’m strongly in favour of young people getting involved in politics.

And the issue matters to us all. The scientific evidence of climate change is overwhelming. During the twentieth century ocean levels rose 15cm (nearly six inches). More than half ocean warming has occurred since 1997.

Peer-reviewed scientific research shows that the rapid warming is due to the methane, nitrous oxide and fossil fuel emissions we produce.

Low-lying islands and coastal cities are at risk. Extreme weather events are increasing. Ecosystems and agricultural practices are under pressure. Poor countries struggle to adapt. Climate change is one of the mix of factors that is driving the large-scale movement of people around the world.

Physics dictates that, however successful our climate policies today, the climate will keep heating up for some decades to come.

Since 1990, the UK has cut emissions by more than 40%. More than 400,000 people work in our low carbon businesses and their supply chains.

We must continue that work and press for international action. The US, China and India need to play their part. Otherwise countries doing the right thing risk losing jobs and business to the laggards.

We face difficult political choices. Raise fuel taxes to deter driving? But I know many small businesses in Bucks and many people in rural areas for whom a car is a necessity, not a luxury.

More renewable energy? Britain now gets more electricity from renewables than from coal. But there are also strong protests when anyone suggests a new wind turbine or solar farm.

All of us, whatever our age, need to face up to this challenge.