Climate Change Activism Inspires a New Club at the U
By Edward Fargis – Staff Writer
This summer, our planet had managed to break numerous records. No, not the fun records you read about in the Guinness Book, but records of heat.
Everywhere from California to Cornwall, record heat has been recorded, with a new story every day. At a mere 1.1 degree of heating, there has also been a symphony of disasters across the globe. This includes the heat wave in Europe, the floods in Pakistan, the water in Jacksonville, the Yangtze River drying up, and Seoul going underwater.
All the while we are flooded with news of this as much as the water itself. It is easier to find the sparse number of unaffected places than the entire continents of affected areas.
Of course, Climate Change is nothing new. Scientists warned of the phenomenon as early as the late 70s. As for myself, this was the year I finally decided to become a Climate Activist. My journey began with Adam McKay’s Netflix original “Don’t Look Up,” a decently comedic if a bit heavy-handed film about a disaster striking an oblivious planet.
That same semester I was also enrolled in our own Dr. Ingber’s Environmental Science class, which gave its own array of eye-opening discoveries in more technical terms.
Finally, I even got to meet Dr. Michael Mann himself when he visited the University to give a presentation. I later went on to read his publication “The New Climate War.”
This summer was the first where social media was exposed to every disaster under the sun striking the earth in a brief period of time. It is both grim and depressing news, but a topic we sadly need to discuss.
However, there is hope. A mere two weeks after I finally returned to the university, I found the U has a whole club dedicated to the environment, the environmental sustainability club.
Not only that, but the club also managed to draw nearly a hundred students into a packed classroom for its meeting. There was an intense round of environmental Jeopardy in which even I managed to contribute to a few questions. I cannot say I felt as at home or answered with any other club I’ve been to thus far.
Overall, my experience these last few days has given me a spark of hope for the future. After three whole generations continued to ditch climate agreements for short term profits, I’m glad that more people in our generation are willing to take a stand.
While to any aspiring climate activist this may seem like a long, arduous battle for our planet, but it is one for which there are several pieces of advice I could give.
Ultimately, activism and pushing for government action against corporations is more important than stopping litterbugs or individual actors ever will be in the long run. Yet another critical point is to always listen to the scientists rather than journalists bankrolled by polluters.
Overall, I remain hopeful we can all wake up to our changing climate.