If We Want a Strong Tomorrow, We Need to Find Ways to Help the Planet Today

by Jack Tornio

I have heard a lot about the future from a lot of different types of people, including dreamers, scientists, and even politicians. In school I hear about math and technology far more than things like ways to help the planet. 

Dreamers think that we will have hovering cars and we will cure cancer. Scientists think that we will find another planet. Even politicians have their opinions, thinking there will be new parties and you will vote for parties other than democrats or republicans. I’m not sure if any of these groups will be correct, but I have my own view about the future.

We need to start now with ways to help the planet.

I believe that if we all take some action that everyone could be right. We could cure cancer. We could find another planet. And maybe there will be entirely new American political groups or international groups.

Although these are possible, I’m not sure if any of these will happen because we think about the future too much. I understand the irony in what I just said, but let me explain.

While we are focused on making new technology and finding new planets, we are forgetting about the here and now. On Earth right now we are struggling. Global warming continues to rise at record paces while there are no major actions being done to slow this down or stop it. We keep burning fossil fuels, trying to create the future in today’s time.

This might sound harsh, but one thing I’ve come to realize is that the adults in this world are being selfish. (Maybe not every adult is being selfish, but enough are that it’s doing serious damage.)

While the Earth is dying, the adults in this world seem keen on trying to make everything happen in their lifetime even though that will never be possible. My hope is that adults start to realize they can’t do everything, so they will instead start looking at what needs to be done now.

Our climate needs us.

Everyone on Earth, especially the adults, need to start focusing on creating a legacy and making a change so that the children and future people of the human race can continue to grow and thrive. As of now, scientists are predicting catastrophic climate change by 2030. (The report says drought, wildfires, and food shortage could impact the lives of millions.)

By 2030, I will be 26. The average healthy male is supposed to live until their 70’s. It’s scary to think that climate change could impact this for me and many other people in the world. I don’t know about you, but I would rather live out my entire life and die peacefully than to have a lower quality of life in my 20s because of the climate.

This is only 10 years away. So now maybe the adults will realize that even they won’t be able to live their whole lives in happiness and peace, without worrying about many of these things.

My solution at first is that we spread the word. Tell everyone you know, especially adults and teenagers about what’s going on. If you want to be part of finding solutions and acting on this, then you have to look at your own actions first.

It starts within yourself.

As the great Mahatma Gandhi once said, “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.”

This means that before you try to change the world, you first have to change yourself. Get rid of your bad habits, and fill them with good habits instead. Try volunteering. Make a commitment to recycle more. You can’t just hope for change or wait for someone else to do it. You have to make the change happen for yourself.

Start small within your community to let people know, and then try to move up to bigger audiences. You never know who might be listening. Perhaps you’ll even find a public influencer that will hear you out and help you take action at a bigger level.

I’m only a sophomore in high school, and I’ve been thinking a lot about these issues. And sometimes it feels like there’s nothing I can do. But I decided to write about it and get the words down as a start.

If I reach 100 people that take action, then that’s another 100 people to help future generations. But at the least, my hope is that this piece of writing can persuade at least one person to get the chain started to adjust their behavior or get the word out to others.

Small change is better than no change. Maybe with enough small efforts, it will push back 2030 to 2031 or 2050. Imagine if every person would takes some sort of action. This would be so powerful. It could mean one more habitat saved, one more catastrophe avoided, and one more year for future generations.

In some ways I hope that this article is the start of my own legacy to speak out. But even more important than my legacy is the message. Even when I’m gone or my name it forgotten, I hope people remember we need to take care of this planet. It’s worth it. And we can’t wait for tomorrow or for someone else to do it instead.

 

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