By Arun Balaji, Kunaal Venugopal, Kaushal Kumar, and Sudhit Rao
In the fight against the climate crisis, individuals are often reluctant to become activists due to the belief that their actions will fail to incite change. However, this viewpoint has been proven fallacious with the actions of individual activists such as Greta Thunberg. Thunberg, now a seventeen-year-old girl from Sweden, has made strides in the climate change movement that have resulted in her winning Time Magazine’s Person of the Year for 2019.
Greta Thunberg grew interested in the climate change movement as a young child, but her activism drew global attention when she started climate strikes at her school in August 2018. The threat of her strike was to not attend school until the election that year in order to convince the Swedish government to institute policies that aligned with the Paris Agreement, which holds a central goal of ameliorating the global response to climate change by limiting the global temperature rise below 2 degrees Celsius by the end of the century. Thunberg’s actions have instigated a ripple effect across the globe as she pushes for global awareness for the pressing issue of climate change. Recently, Thunberg made a post on Twitter showing her continued support for the climate strike movement in schools. Thunberg’s ability to make a substantial impact on the climate change movement elucidates to the potential that all individuals could have. Clearly, no matter where an individual is from, regardless of their background or situation, they can make an impact on our world.
When it comes to mitigating the climate crisis, an individual can do a variety of things in their community to raise awareness on the issue and further developments in mitigating the problem. One can do something as simple as encouraging their peers to reuse and recycle to create a cleaner world, design more efficient recycling procedures, creatively reduce ocean pollution, or create a business that regulates these procedures– the possibilities are endless. No matter the scale, we can make an impact by creating a ripple effect and inspiring our peers to do something in their community. After all, it is our planet to save.
Inspired by the actions of Thunberg, Adarsh Ambati, a sophomore from Mitty High School, is working diligently to combat climate change by making STEM accessible to all, through his non-profit Gro-Stems. Working by his vision of achieving “a world in which everyone strives to better the environment,” Adarsh, funded by his sale of succulents and a GoFundMe, hopes to mitigate climate change by increasing environmental literacy in homeless shelters around him. Simple passion projects like Adarsh’s have made a great impact on the community, as a right step forward in a cleaner, better planet.
We all can make a difference. If you think that you have an idea regarding the fight against climate change or any business proposals/innovational ventures, consider taking part in Cloud9, a virtual pitch competition hosted by Elevate the Future, a nonprofit organization focused on “providing youth with the resources and support in order to spark their passions and set them up for success.” Co-founded by Rayan Garg and Arjun Gupta, the organization has worked tirelessly to close the educational gap in Generation Z. The competition is being judged by industry experts from large Silicon Valley corporations. The winners not only receive a cash prize but also an automatic entry to the semifinals of the Blaze Global competition; this competition may be the perfect platform to showcase your ideas. Really, anyone can have an impact, with these competitions being only one of those venues. So let your ideas fly, innovate, and make a positive difference in our world.