For a long time in the twenty-first century, a popular statement has circulated around society: "Ignorance is bliss." This short sentence from the poetry "Ode on a Distant Prospect at Eton College" expresses the fact that the more one learns, the more sorrowful he or she becomes. So it simply implies that living in a pleasant delusion is preferable for the sake of happiness. When we look at the twenty-first century as a whole, we can see that individuals have incorporated this notion into their daily lives.
Despite the knowledge that global warming and the consumption of key resources are increasing at an alarming rate, people choose to disregard these truths and live in a pleasant delusion. However, our world is not in a position to tolerate such a mindset. Climate change is one of the most prominent examples of this problem. As a result of greenhouse gas emissions, we have begun to see hurricanes, floats, droughts, and dangerous changes in ecosystems.
Today, climate change is a huge worldwide concern, and the world is becoming more sensitive to it. Climate change refers to changes in the Earth's climate. It covers changes in the atmosphere that have occurred across time spans ranging from decades to millions of years.
Effects of climate change
If the current climate change situation continues, it will have an influence on all forms of life on Earth. The Earth's temperature will rise, monsoon patterns will shift, sea levels will rise, and storms, volcano eruptions, and natural calamities will become more common. The Earth's biological and ecological balance will be disrupted. The environment will become polluted, and humanity will be unable to breathe clean air or drink clean water. The Earth's life will come to an end.
There are countless methods to better ourselves in the name of environmental protection. The first and most important approach to accomplish this is to alter our mindset. We all pretend that ignoring our problems will make them go away, but the truth is far from what we believe. Our ecosystem is screaming for aid, but we refuse to listen.
Surprisingly, we are unaware that we are in the same boat as the environment. Our ecosystem is screaming for aid, but we refuse to listen. Each time nature is injured, it harms us too. Simply changing our thoughts can have far-reaching consequences. If we treat nature as if it were a loving friend and instil this understanding in our children, things will begin to make sense, and we will understand why scientists and climate activists are concerned about the state of the planet.
Greta Thunberg instantly comes to mind when we talk about climate campaigners. While the young Swedish activist has made significant strides in raising awareness about climate change issues and inspiring widespread climate strikes around the world, many incredible individuals are leading the way in global climate action to curb global warming and the most serious environmental issues we face today.
5 youth climate activists leading the conversation on climate change
Xiuhtezcatl Martinez @xiuhtezcatl
Xiuhtezcatl Martinez, also known by the initial 'X', is a young environmental activist and champion for indigenous and marginalised communities who have already made a significant impact in the fight against climate change. Martinez has been particularly vocal in her opposition to the consequences of fossil fuels, and she was one of 21 plaintiffs in Juliana v. United States, a 2015 lawsuit filed against the US government for continuing to utilise fossil fuels and failing to act on climate change. The 21-year-old activist (and hip-hop musician) has delivered addresses at the United Nations in English, Spanish, and Nahuatl, his home language, to illustrate how global climate action contributes to the larger struggle against injustice and inequality.
Licypriya Kangujam @licypriyakangujam
Licypriya Kangujam, one of the world's youngest climate activists, began campaigning for local and global climate action at the age of six, protesting outside the Indian parliament with a particular set of demands, including air pollution regulations and making climate-change awareness required in schools. Kangujam has since addressed world leaders at the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Madrid in 2019, given at least six TEDx talks, founded 'The Child Movement', a young global climate justice organisation, and travelled to 32 countries to give speeches and raise support, all before the age of ten.
Xiye Bastida @xiyebeara
This 19-year-old was born to two environmentalists who met at a climate change conference in 1992 and is now one of Mexico's most visible youth activists. After witnessing firsthand the devastating effects of climate change in their homeland of San Pedro Tultepec in 2015, Bastida advocates for more aggressive global climate action by governments and increased indigenous and immigrant visibility in climate activism. Bastida wears several hats, from being one of the key organisers of New York City's Fridays for Future to being the co-founder of Re-Earth Initiative, an international not-for-profit organisation that aspires to be inclusive and intersectional, as well as sitting on the administration committee of the People's Climate Movement.
Luisa Neubauer @Luisamneubauer
Luisa Neubauer, one of the key organisers of Germany's Fridays For Future climate strike programme and dubbed the "German Greta Thunberg", advocates for climate measures beyond the Paris Agreement's aims. She has previously advocated for the University of Göttingen to refrain from investing in the fossil fuel industry, as well as teaching and supporting policies such as degrowth. Neubauer has joined the German Green Party as well as its youth branch in order to continue her lobbying activities.
Ella and Amy Meek @kidsagainstplastic
Ella and Amy Meek, as the name of their non-profit suggests, are two children (and sisters) fighting plastic pollution and trash in the United Kingdom. At the ages of 10 and 12, the duo founded Kids Against Plastic in 2016 and has now collected over 100,000 pieces of single-use plastic litter across the country. In addition, they initiated campaign efforts with over 1,000 schools and over 50 cafés, businesses, and events, and in 2020, they produced the book Be Plastic Clever. With many speaking engagements under their belts, including a TEDx Talk, you can keep up with the sisters' latest campaigns and activities on social media and help make the UK plastic-free.