Every Earth Day I see the same messages: “Save the Planet!” “Protect our Earth!”
As if for the sake of charity, we are trying to save something totally separate from ourselves.
I am a 16-year-old full time environmental activist alongside my full-time job of being a sophomore in high school. I don’t put in hours of work every day because I’m trying to save something separate from myself.
I am an activist because my life depends on it.
The earth has been here way longer than humans, and it will continue to be here way after we are gone. There have been five mass extinctions on this planet so far and the earth has been here throughout all of them. We could set the entire world on fire and the earth would still be here. We wouldn’t, but the earth would.
The environmental movement is not saving a planet, we’re saving the conditions that we as humans need in order to survive. We’re saving ourselves.
I am the founder of a youth climate action organization called Zero Hour. Zero Hour is an intersectional movement that centers the voices of diverse youth in the conversation around climate and environmental justice. We are a movement of unstoppable youth organizing to protect our rights and access to the natural resources and a clean, safe, and healthy environment that will ensure a livable future where we not just survive, but flourish.
We are mobilizing students to lobby on Capitol Hill on July 19th, and we are marching in Washington, D.C. on July 21st for climate justice and a livable future.
Mark your calendars. July 19th-July 21st is Youth Climate Action weekend in DC.
We are called Zero Hour because #ThisIsZeroHour to act on climate change. There is no more time to pretend that climate change is not an emergency. Young people are inheriting a broken world that we didn’t ask for or have control in shaping, and through our July actions we are reminding our leaders of their responsibility to protect young people from this looming threat.
I am constantly being asked to plan for my future- what colleges I’m going to apply for, what I’m going to be when I grow up – but how am I supposed to plan for my future assuming everything will be normal, when in reality, all of the world’s life systems are falling apart?
Because of humanity’s addiction to fossil fuels and animal agriculture, we are driving– not the earth- but the human race to extinction.
That’s why young people are stepping up this summer, and doing everything that we can. But we can’t fight the crisis alone.
Will you join the #ThisIsZeroHour movement to support the youth?
Will you do everything you in your power – not to save the earth – but to save yourself, your kids, your grandkids and life as we know it?