To Little Too Late
The current politicians that run the American government should do more to combat climate change. The repercussions of doing nothing in the year 2022 will have unbelievable consequences for the next generation. Scientists and activists have been warning politicians about this for well over twenty years beginning with president Al Gore in 1996. Climate Change has been announced and talked about thirty years ago, but no one has done anything big to attempt and stop it. The people have a right to bring about change in a democracy even if its president is apt to oppose it. In the year 2022, politics plays a major role in hindering the effects of climate change.
Those opposed to climate change were led by the past administration of the Republican party. Former President Trump has successfully sold the lie. Making changes to how factories produce things is going to cost the owner of the factory millions of dollars. Conservative owners of factories are willing to listen to the current administration's view on climate change which is that it is a hoax. Trump is not an expert on science or geology and completely disregards their professional recommendations to reduce carbon emissions. The opponents to climate change believe that it is a hoax for the following reasons: their personal experiences, no real proof or evidence, distrust of science, and no
known cause. If this is the case, it would be fair to say that the Trump administration did nothing to combat climate change. Activists like Greta Thunberg have spoken at the UN bringing global awareness to the consequences of climate change. To bring about an effect in America and around the globe people are going to need endorsements from companies and people with money; this may prove to be a challenging task. Most companies are aware that changing the infrastructure of their factories will cost the owners millions of dollars from their pockets. The grassroots activists somehow need to convince these owners of the factories that the environment is more important than profit. There are alternative energy resources that do not hurt the planet as badly as coal consumption; wind power and solar energy are two perfect examples that companies could implement in their factories. A major advantage of wind is that it is a clean and renewable form of energy. Its production of electricity has no direct carbon emissions or air pollutants and does not consume water. Wind also has relatively low operations and maintenance costs after initial construction. (studentenerg.org) The price tag of wind power has traditionally been higher than conventional electricity, though the wind cost curve had decreased significantly in recent years. (studentenergy.org)
The most respected organization in the world that is in charge of the space agency “NASA” has released scientific evidence declaring that the warming of the climate system is unequivocal (nasa.org) . If even NASA said something, then that means American citizens should take action and listen to the experts even if politicians are dragging their feet. Why? NASA wouldn't report small problems; climate change could be life threatening to humans. Also, if it increases in severity it could possibly end the human race or force us to move onto another planet. Climate change is an ongoing issue but there are people like our past president who do not believe in this issue. Some might ask what does climate change do? Climate change has a variety of impacts such as irregular temperatures and weather patterns throughout the year. For example, it could be very hot in the middle of January or really cold in June.
In Northern Europe, there are progressive countries like Germany and Sweden that take climate change very seriously. These countries have resorted to using alternative means of energy such as windmills rather than coal to reduce carbon emissions in the atmosphere. The small steps taken by certain countries will become role models for other countries to follow. Countries such as China, which has a population of more than 1.5 billion people, resort to using coal. They have ignored the repeated warnings of activists regarding climate change and only care about increasing the profit of their factories. President Xi Jinping has to listen to these young activists who are desperately trying to make their point known that failure to act will lead to a dismal future. The Chinese government has initiated a massive national action plan halting the growth of coal consumption, improving air quality and helping the country limit emissions overall. (Time.com) As the world’s manufacturing biggest hub, China is in a unique position to change the course of global emissions. (Time.com) American companies who want to reduce the price of manufacturing have their products built in China and are just as culpable for carbon emissions.
Unfortunately, China has dealt with a global pandemic in the city of Wuhan that cost the government billions of dollars. The reality of many Chinese civilians who contracted the virus is very high resulting in high mortality rates or in other words more deaths.
Consequently, President Xi has placed this as the top priority for the Chinese government to address. The COVID-19 outbreak became the main contributor that halted China’s plans.
Ideally, someone from Northern Europe must convince President Xi Jinping that the slow changes that he is making will prove most promising in twenty years time in fending off climate change. Due to the negligence of the 2016 election, the United States elected a leader who truly believed that climate change would not affect American lives and had neglected taking steps to remedy the problem. He will go down in history as the one president who could have done most to address climate change but did nothing at all.
In conclusion, it is clear that if no one does anything to stop climate change we will all be in danger. Some people even have said that it is already too late to do anything. Despite the noble efforts of certain activists that have addressed the UN, nations of the world have not come together to immediately address the issue of decreasing carbon emissions. There seems to be a malaise in part to the American administration in postponing the crisis of climate change. America has always been the leader in taking on a crisis that affects the poorest people in the world. However, politics has played a key factor in climate change being put on the backburner. Young people cannot wait for adult leaders to change their mind, a grassroots revolution must be made using social media sites on the net to bring the crisis globally around the world. Activists such as Greta Thunberg have even been lampooned by the current US administration as a “petulant crybaby”. When the poor were struggling in the streets of Paris, people could not wait for Louis the XVI to solve their problems of starvation and poverty. They took action and overthrew the government. Climate change does not need to go that far in bringing about a revolution in a country. Alas, it may have to take a natural catastrophe to bring the full attention of the US government to properly address climate change.
How do young people bring attention to climate change without the full support of corporations and political cynics? Young people are going to have to communicate globally by means of social media to bring awareness to climate change. These young people will soon become adults who have the power to cast votes to throw climate change deniers out of office. Historically, adults have underestimated the power that young people can do to bring about change. They are dismissed as naive and gullible. Greta Thunberg is a role model for many young people worldwide in speaking before the UN to protest resistance to climate change. In many historical revolutions, world leaders have underestimated the power of the youth. It is often these disenfranchised individuals that take to the streets that bring about change. Bringing about climate change awareness does not have to result in a violent revolution, but rather educating others on a public health issue. However, if stubborn adults refuse to listen to the young people in their countries we will forever be in conflict. How embarrassing would it be if our descendents became mad at us because we had to move to Mars due to the greed and conflict in society. Thunberg began a global movement by skipping school: starting in August 2018, she spent her days camped out in front of the Swedish Parliament, holding a sign painted in black letters on a white background that read Skolstrejk för klimatet: “School Strike for Climate.” In the 16 months since, she has addressed heads of state at the U.N, met with the Pope, sparred with the past President of the United States, and inspired 4 million people to join the global climate strike on September 20, 2019, in what was the largest climate demonstration in human history. (Time.com)
Imagine if students world-wide take Greta’s advice in boycotting school until their leader does something about Climate Change. Adult politicians seriously underestimate what young people can do to their careers if they feel their voices are being unheard. Greta Thunberg without a doubt deserves to be Time magazine’s Person of the Year.
By Willa Wang