In the past few decades, droves of people around the globe have begun to pay more and more attention to the climate crisis currently at hand. And make no mistake, our time is running out.
According to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), an overwhelming 97 percent or more of scientists agree that human activity has greatly contributed to a negative change in the earth’s climate, with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPPC) warning us that if we don’t keep our annual carbon emissions to a limit of 1.5 degrees Celsius, there could be lasting, drastic effects.
Among the millions who have joined the battle to keep our climate under control are the youth, who have as of late have been receiving international attention and recognition for their proactiveness on the issue through the means of protest, walk outs, pressure on government and business, and more.
Chester Academy students Tiana Hewit, 17 (grade 12), and Omar Baig, 14, (grade 9), both fall into this demographic. Tiana says that she does her part in reducing her carbon footprint through recycling, while Omar states that we should all try to be more mindful of the way we get from place to place, and that we should consider biking and carpooling more as a viable way to cut down on greenhouse emissions.
Chester Academy student Caleb Garver, 16 (grade 11), expressed further concern for the state of our environment.
“Our environment means a lot to me," he said. "It’s hard to watch the continuous mass deforestation taking place around the globe, even the fires going on in the west."
He, along with many other students from our area, all agree that the key to saving our planet lies within cooperation, and with it an incredible amount of efficient coordination.
It is important to note, however, that not all teens are on board with the idea of human-caused climate change. One student who wished to remain anonymous said he believed that “climate change is just a product of nature."
Nevertheless, for those who do believe in human-caused climate change, it’s important to consider what goals are plausible, and which aren’t, with certain political scientists and environmental academics, such as Forbes contributor Roger Pielke, stressing that “the world is going to miss the 2030 target" in reducing carbon emissions by 45 percent, "whether we talk about that reality or deny it."
With all the headlines, studies, and reports that come out daily, it can be hard to keep up. That’s why it’s important to educate yourself on the subject at hand, and how we can all do our part in preserving our planet. After all, whether we like it or not, it’s the only one we have.
Editor's note: Jacob Mott is a high school student at the Chester Academy.
“Our environment means a lot to me," he said. "It’s hard to watch the continuous mass deforestation taking place around the globe, even the fires going on in the west." --Caleb Garver, 16