By: Aadil and Alia Nathani
Aadil and Alia Nathani are both volunteers for the Langham Creek YMCA in Houston Texas. Alia is about to start her freshman year ar Rice University and Aadil is entering his Junior year at Langham Creek High School.
These past few months have been absolutely crazy for everyone around the world. From wildfires in the arctic (who would’ve guessed?!) to locust swarms in southeast Asia to economic recessions, and, of course, the Coronavirus Pandemic, 2020 has certainly been a year for the books. Yet, while the world distraughtly focuses on the rising graphs of Covid-19 cases, the graphs of carbon emissions are similarly on the rise.
A few weeks into the Coronavirus Pandemic, social media became flooded with images of skylines, for once not hazy with pollution. In combination with the lockdowns, which drastically reduced the amount of transportation, these pictures kindled the hope that perhaps the issue of climate change would finally be at a turning point; that maybe, amid the terrible news of the pandemic and death tolls, Coronavirus just may have been able to do what humans have been trying to do for decades: lower carbon emissions. Unfortunately, behind the façade of empty streets and clear skylines remains the dark truth of enticingly low oil prices, oil holding facilities full to the brim, the global dependence on unsustainable products, permanent habitat loss, and other repercussions of climate change. As much as we try to turn away from it, climate change is a long and detrimental chain of dominoes, a chain that has already begun its course.
Nevertheless, we believe that the youth can make an impact and we intend to be the youth that do with Climate Vision 2050. According to the European Union, the goal is to be carbon neutral by the year 2050, and we hope to help our world achieve that. Through Climate Vision 2050, we are uniting youth, particularly those from the Cypress/Houston, Texas area to raise awareness and act against climate change. By working with the YMCA and through conferences and meetings with leaders and students from around the world, we aim to raise awareness and make it an established fact that climate change is an issue we need to face. And then, and only then, when people acknowledge the reality of and accept responsibility for climate change, can we move forward and make change.
Although we are presently limited by the need for social distancing, this great age of social media and online communication is our platform for reaching out, encouraging sustainable policy changes and voting for leaders who will support sustainable policies, informing others of how we can implement sustainability in our individual lives, and empowering youth to go into their communities and advocate for the changes that will help them and their community be part of a greener future. Our mission is vital, and we will put in every effort to surpass the goals we set. We have a vision and we will see it through.