How concerned are LWC students with climate change?

The effects of climate change are ever present in the average person’s life, yet few seem to fight for change to stop the situation from progressing to a point of no return. Climate change can be blamed for the increase in natural disasters in 2018, which will only become more prevalent if there is no changes made. During the United Nations assembly, the representative from Bolivia discussed that the Paris Agreement is not capable of making the necessary adjustments and continued to suggest that there should be a specific tribunal for environmental action.

But where will this change come from? High school students, especially, are the new voice of reason which will make the shift occur. As one of the most empathetic and educated generations, they are the last hope for this desperately needed change. There are some acts in place in an attempt to get a movement started, but the revolution will take a mass amount of support, for it will have to change nearly everyone’s carbon footprint. There have been some ideas like the banning of plastic straws, which are a simple cut-out from the average person’s life that would make a huge impact for the environment and ocean life, or the movement of reusable shopping bags rather than single use plastic ones that end up in landfills or the ocean. As students, most have yet to enter the ‘real world’ of having a full-time job, owning a house or car, or doing their own grocery shopping, and therefore should be better educated on how to make more environmentally conscious decisions.

I talked with my fellow high school classmate, Makenzie Jarchow, about how much or little she knew about climate change and the current state of our planet. “I guess I don’t really know that much about climate change,” she says, “I always knew what it meant and that it was an issue, but I don’t know the specifics, I don’t really follow the news coverage about it.” When asked how she felt it was being handled by the people in power, she responded with, “I feel that more action should be taken, there doesn’t seem to be a lot of change happening and it just seems to be getting worse. Sometimes I’ll use a reusable bag at the grocery store, but that’s all I consciously do to help the planet on a daily basis.”

All in all, our planet is in dire need for change, and those in power today seem to have no plans to help repair the damage done or prevent further destruction, which relies on the future generation of high school students. With more education on the topic and what needs to be done, we as high school students can help save our planet from the destined outcome, and be able to sustain ourselves for years to come.