Despite what baby boomers say or what trolls write, the millennials and the succeeding generation are responding positively to climate change and global warming. Not just the 16-year-old Swedish youth Greta Thunberg, several youngsters from around the world are taking affirmative action to combat climate change, as it’s their generation that is facing the brunt of the problem created by the older generation. Earlier this year on March 15, in what is said to be the largest youth-led protest in history, an estimated 1.6 million students in 300 cities around the world walked out of school to march for climate action.
Greta, particularly, is facing waves of backlash after she criticised global leaders at the United Nations last month for not doing enough to control climate change problems. She said, “People are dying; entire ecosystems are collapsing. We are in the beginning of a mass extinction and all you can talk about is money and fairy tales of eternal economic growth. How dare you!”
However, she faced backlash from right wing politicians, policy makers and climate skeptics for her comments.
They not only targeted Greta, but blamed all her peers for global warming and climate change problems. The critics said that the youth cannot give up environment-damaging material comforts, and therefore, they are damaging the environment.
Before blaming the youth, the critics should know that climate change is not a recent problem. Environment related problems started decades ago, before even these young green activist were born. Politicians, policy-makers and industrial lobbyists — people who can actually bring about positive changes — are seasoned people who have done little to mitigate climate change problems. They chose to look the other way when forests were being cut, mountains were being mauled, rivers were being choked and animals were being poached.
The likes of Greta, at least, have the guts to stand up and speak their mind by calling a spade a spade. How many of these critics raised their voice for the right thing, when they were young? Had they stopped their seniors from damaging the ecology, we would have continued to live in a greener, happier and healthier planet. Wake up and stop criticising the youth; instead support them in their endeavors. Being selfish and egoistic does not help anyone. Lessons can be learnt from anyone, and age is no bar. We should learn from these youngsters, share their enthusiasm, heed their plea and join them in combating climate change. For we have only planet to live and it’s the duty of all of us to protect and nurture it.
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