We are responsible for putting so much carbon dioxide into the atmosphere that we are changing the climate in unpredictable ways. We need to cut our use of energy drastically starting right now and the good thing is that we already have most of the technology we need. Insulation technology is now highly effective. Solar energy is rapidly becoming highly cost effective even in cloudy Britain and can be easily installed near high use areas on brownfield sites and on new development. Most of this technology involves short term investment costs and long term reductions in bills so it can easily be made cost effective with the right government subsidies. What is even better is that freeing ourselves from much of our fossil fuel use also makes extraordinarily good sense strategically. We don't have to be nice to the Saudi women haters or the Russian authoritarians if we don't depend on their oil and gas.
We are also responsible for destroying more life on this planet than anything since the asteroid did for the dinosaurs. Cutting down rainforests, destroying soil fertility and pouring so many fertilizers onto the land that we are in danger of losing the great barrier reef are all the acts of a species that is not worrying about the legacy we leave for future generations.
On top of this we are responsible for dumping so much plastic into the seas that there is a giant raft of it floating in the oceans and every beach in the world - no matter how remote - gets a new consignment of plastic rubbish every day. Some people even scrub their faces with tiny plastic particles and then wash millions of tiny plastic particles into the oceans which look like food to plankton and put at risk the whole ocean food chain. It is much more expensive to clean up these problems than it is to try and prevent them taking place at all. But the expense of prevention falls on us whilst the cost of the clean up falls on our children so we carry on putting off the unavoidable task of creating a circular economy that reuses the materials things are made from. Don't worry. The next generation can pay our bills.
Being highly responsible we also destroying our pollinating insects. Careless international imports of bees is spreading disease and pests which are wiping out many of our bumblebees. Reckless destruction of hedgerows and trees is depriving pollinating insects of breeding sites, food and shelter. Huge industrialised agriculture operators are planting the same crop over miles of countryside and holding back the insects that might each it via chemical spraying or building pesticides into the seeds to penetrate the whole plant. The next generations are going to want to know what happened to all the natural predators and why they have to hand pollinate crops. The alternative of getting higher yields per acre via growing varied crops and using integrated pest management techniques are available now. They require more investment in agriculture and more agricultural employment but we are not using them because the methods we use are cheaper right now - even if they are much more expensive in the long run.
The list of the things we are responsible is a long one but I will just pick out one more. We are generating power by creating massive quantities of nuclear waste that we don't know what to do with. No human civilisation has ever lasted for 2,000 years continuously without experiencing a period of lengthy disruption. Ours needs to last that long in order to store nuclear waste safely until it is somewhat near tolerable levels of toxicity. It would be a brave historian who would find this to be a secure prediction of the future and no climate scientist would tell you that decommissioned power stations near coastal estuaries (the commonest site) will be safe from changes to sea levels. Yet we continue to build nuclear power stations and to create even more waste that we don't know what to do with. Never mind. Future generations will sort it out.
If this is being responsible then maybe it is time for a change and we should all support one of the minor parties. Say one that is committed to thinking long term. One that is committed to prioritising environmental problems. One that isn't scared to say that we might need to spend a bit of money on helping our children. One that is prepared to use government to help solve problems rather than assuming it must always be a nuisance that is getting in the way of today's quick and easy profits. A party, say, that calls itself Green!