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It’s Time to Talk About Climate Change

It’s time to talk about climate change. It’s a subject that terrifies me, and I’m sure it does the same to countless others. It’s even more frightening that our current president refuses to talk about it (except when he refers to it as a hoax created by the Chinese), and nominated Scott Pruitt, a man with ties to the fossil fuel industry, as the head of the Environmental Protection Agency. With temperatures along the east coast soaring up to the 70s in mid-Feb., it is astounding that so few politicians are taking this issue to heart.

But climate change is an issue that spans beyond just America. It will impact all of us, and we are already beginning to see its effects.

While this problem seems too large for any one person to make an impact, there are many outlets for individuals to lessen the devastating impacts of climate change.

Not talking about this issue will only make it worse. While it’s hard to confront this issue head on,  one of the best ways to stall climate change is by talking about it. Keeping pushing it to the forefront of the news, and don’t let climate change fall behind whatever silly shenanigans Trump has created. Here are five things that you can do to counteract climate change:

  1. Change your transportation habits. According to Greenpeace, transport contributes approximately 13 percent of total global greenhouse gas emissions. If you can walk to school, bike to work or take public transportation when going out to dinner, you are helping to reduce your own personal CO2 emissions. If you live in an area where walking or riding a bike to your destination isn’t always feasible, create a carpool group. While you’re still using a car, the polluting effects of one car are significantly less than the emissions of three or four.
  2. Call your congressman or senator. While Trump may not be doing anything to combat global warming, you can get your representative to act. By calling your representative in state government or writing a letter to your senator, your voice is what drives their actions. The more phone calls, emails and letters legislators get, the more likely they are to act on a certain issue. So organize your friends and family to call their representatives about the pressing issue of climate change. Get groups of your co-workers and classmates to mail their senator about the negative impacts of global warming in your state.
  3. Volunteer for an organization that is battling climate change. While calling your congressman or senator is crucial in getting legislation passed, there are many advocacy groups that also help pass legislation that protecting the environment. There are countless organizations whose sole mission is to combat climate change, and they need all of the help they can get. From newer grassroots organizations like 350 to older, more well-known groups like the Sierra Club, there is a volunteering opportunity for everyone. If you want to protect endangered species, the National Wildlife Federation is for you. If you want to have an impact by working with a global organization, Greenpeace has chapters in over 55 countries. There’s an opportunity for everyone to practice their passion while also protecting the environment.
  4. Educate others. While most people have come to the consensus that climate change is real, there are still some people who don’t believe in it. Show those people statistics about how it will impact where they live and their daily lives. If they can see that climate change will negatively impact themselves, they might be more open to believing in it and working to prevent it.
  5. Don’t be afraid to talk about climate change. This is a scary issue, no doubt. But shying away from stories about the abnormally high temperatures in the Arctic or wacky weather will not do anything to solve the problem. The best way to start fighting climate change is to start the conversation about it. If you face your fears and anxieties about global warming, you can begin to be a part of the movement to stop climate change

Climate change is one of the most terrifying and pressing issues of our time. But if we follow some of these steps, we can work to lessen its effects.

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