(E) We need to act now, and on a large scale if we want a future for a livable planet. My generation and the previous generations are responsible for climate change, and the misuse and abuse of many renewable resources on earth.
Life is likely to be more difficult and less enjoyable for the generations to come. We need to acknowledge that fact and hear their voices.
Here is an excellent article published in the Almanac recently by Zachary Meyer, who graduated from Menlo-Atherton High School in 2019 and currently works as an intern at Menlo Spark:
“If you were born after 1981, you are a part of the “Climate Generation” — the generation of people who have lived exceptionally aware of anthropogenic climate change. This generation has also grown up with unprecedented access to information and media, which has created a jaded and pessimistic group of people. The younger side of the Climate Generation, Generation Z, also exhibits the highest rate of depression, stress and anxiety of any generation.
Although they may seem apathetic, the Climate Generation is leading the charge when it comes to acting against climate change, whether by donating, volunteering or opposing regressive energy policies like offshore drilling, according to a study by Pew Research Center.
I am a part of this generation, having been born at Stanford Hospital in 2001 and lived my entire life in Menlo Park.
I have grown up passionate and with a desire to make an impact. By joining grassroots organizations, studying sustainability in college and living my life conscious of the environment, I do as much as possible. However, given that my generation is at the mercy of previous generations’ stranglehold on financial and political capital, activism will only get us so far.
In 2021, people born after 1981 owned only 6.6% of the wealth in the United States. On top of this, only one senator and 39 representatives of the 117th Congress were born after 1981, a mere 7%. About 50% of the US population is under 40 or born after 1981. There is a severe lack of representation for the group of people most active about climate change, and there is far too little time for us to wait for “the great wealth transfer.” It is up to older generations to pave a path that will allow future generations to thrive.
I ask that those outside of the Climate Generation please invest in youth-led grassroots environmental organizations and voice your support for innovative policies for building decarbonization, renewable energy and multimodal transportation infrastructure. If you are a politician, please also consider adopting these smart policies or pave a way for younger generations to gain more representation in politics.
Currently I am faced with reading reports of a future where coral reefs will decline by 99%, and the number of heat waves per year are expected to increase by four to eight times. I want a future I can look forward to. Right now, that future is in your hands!”
Note: The picture above are fruits and vegetables from my garden who need water.
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