Dear Ms.(or Mr) President,
Climate change is a fact and, just like every other fact, it can can be denied, not avoided. The ice is melting, people with asthma and allergies are getting sicker, diseases spread by ticks and mosquitoes are getting worse. Climate change is contaminating our air, our food, our water. We humans are slowly poisoning ourselves and our Earth. It is estimated that due to carbon dioxide, the world’s average income will shrink by 23%.
Did you know that the Atmospheric Administration reported that global temperatures last year were the highest on record? Low-lying islands are the helpless victims of rising sea levels. The Solomon Islands have had complete villages washed away by the receding shoreline. Though it’s quite difficult to link any single natural disaster to climate change, the average number of natural disasters per year has doubled since 1985 and grown more severe. This all seems very removed from us, but it is estimated that tens of millions to several hundred million people will be forced to relocate due to climate change--and that’s a lot of people without homes in the United States alone!
I may just be naive, but I thought that we, as a planet, were becoming more of a community and as a community we must all stand together to face the threat of climate change. I find myself very close to the issue of climate change because I went to a very environmentally conscious charter school where we talked about renewable energy, waste and run-off that damages our water supplies, and how we as individuals are responsible for our environment.
So what is being done to prevent the destruction that climate change is bringing? Scientists in Germany are trying to make renewable energy more consistent by storing energy in hot rocks. In Scotland an oil company has plans to install the first commercial wind turbines in the ocean to harvest the strong and steady ocean winds. Closer to home, an American company is attempting to create a new type of power plant that would create energy while cheaply capturing emissions. With all these innovations it may seem like we will be okay, that everything that can be done, is being done. However, it is still not enough. To completely avert the worst effects of climate change, emissions will have to decrease by 80% globally by 2050. There are many small laws that could be enacted to help, even just a little. As president, you have a responsibility to improve the U.S.A, not just for the next four or eight years, but for our indefinite future. I believe there should be more research on and awareness about climate change.
I know that there are more pressing threats, such as nuclear war, police brutality and the spreading of diseases, but if we don’t change how we treat our planet, we will all suffer even more in the long run. The U.S. federal budget for new environmental technology is only 6 billion dollars a year, less than Americans spend on potato chips! People need to be educated and encouraged to explore new solutions to climate change, or the future of the U.S. might not be a long one.