Guest editorial: Taking action

We are Youth Go Green, Powell River’s climate-action club for youth. As teens of this town, we’ve come together to create a space where young people can talk openly about their feelings towards climate change, take action to raise awareness, and build a future we can look forward to. 

We need to get something straight: we are afraid. 

At the moment we feel helpless. With access to social media, we are the generation that has global-wide coverage of what’s going on. We see all the disasters, the damage that’s being done to our planet, and all the terrifying realities our actions as a species has caused. We are unable to turn a blind eye because we know that this is our future at stake. The problem is, we aren’t always heard. 

As young people, we find it difficult to get our point across to older generations. We feel brushed off. We’re constantly fighting the label of “being too young to understand,” and we’re getting tired of being talked down to. 

We’re running out of time and we can no longer afford ignorance. 

The fate of the planet feels like it’s been placed on our shoulders, and it’s a lot of weight to bear. 

Our future, right now, is unpredictable. We can’t be certain, like the generations before us, that we’ll have a safe place to raise our own kids, a clean ocean to swim in, unpolluted air to breathe, and healthy soil to grow our food in. 

Even though we have talked a lot about the pessimistic side of our emotions, we are still trying to keep a positive mindset. We wouldn't be able to make a difference if we hid in our homes or gave in to the idea of hopelessness. 

The reason we continue to speak up and fight for what we believe in, is because we want to remind people that it’s not over. We are pushing for awareness and validation of our concerns. 

It doesn’t matter how old we are, we can still see the issue at hand. We, with our minimal education and life experience, can easily see that something is wrong and that we need to get in gear. We need to unite, come up with solutions as a whole, and start applying those solutions. We stand strong against apathy. Once we develop a community-wide passion for change, there will be a hopeful future for us. 

The only way we can see ourselves moving forward is if there is a radical change in how we live and treat our planet. We call for the help of our older generation to join us and see the critical condition our planet is in. With our devotion and optimism, and your resources and authority, we will reform this world into a safe home where we aren’t relying on self-sustainability for survival, but for security.

Macy How is a member of Powell River Youth Go Green (YGG).

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