What’s Your Climate Story?

STFers share their personal reasons for fighting climate change and explain their urgent advocacy to transition their schools to 100% renewable energy.

To learn more, check out STF’s Green Schools Campaign materials.

For motivation, view these four personal climate stories:

Hi everyone, my name is Josiah Edwards. I’m an STF intern and this is my climate story. As a child, I always had difficulty breathing. That’s mostly because I had asthma, but it was made even more difficult because of the environment I lived in. Los Angeles County is ranked as one of the worst places in terms of air quality and air pollution. That means that I had difficulty breathing every day as a consequence of the horrible, horrible pollution in our air. That means, I didn’t get the chance to enjoy beautiful days like this one, and I don’t think that’s right. No child should have to suffer because we don’t know how to deal with pollution. That’s why we need to tackle this climate crisis, with the full force that we possibly can muster, in order to ensure that children don’t have to suffer like I did. (Click to watch, 0:57)
Hi, my name is Erin Vinson and I attend Santa Monica High School. I believe my passion for the environment is an accumulation of everything I’ve witnessed in terms of photos of our dying planet, as well as tangible experiences I’ve had with it. David Attenborough’s “A Life on Our Planet” truly struck me as a thundering call to take action for our environment, providing a voice for our melting glaciers and our dying animals who are soon to take their last breaths if we don’t take action now. Rising sea levels and climate change itself makes me feel as though I’m trapped inside a small room that’s rapidly losing air, like I’m suffocating. This feeling was amplified by the all too recent California fires. In many instances, I felt like I couldn’t breathe even weeks after they had been put out. If my school made the transition to clean, renewable energy, I’d feel as though the air would be seeping out of that room just a bit slower, and I’d feel able to have a short moment of relief, because any step of any size towards a cleaner present is progress. (Click to watch, 1:04)
Hello, my name is Abdullah Rafique. I am a senior at Sierra Canyon and this is my story. Cracked desert land had replaced lush farms which had once covered the hills surrounding my grandparents home in Pakistan. The drive which was once full of beauty was now only a reminder of what once was. The land had been destroyed. My uncle described how excessive use of fertilizers caused this grand scale of destruction. While this was not directly caused because of climate change, the lack of environmental care which was fueling climate change was present here as well. Thus, I doubled my efforts to become a better climate advocate. (Click to watch, 0:48)
Hi, my name is Lila Bragard and I’m from Culver City High School. I inhaled the dark brown air around me as I walked through the smoke to get to school. My cousins were evacuating. The Torahs from my temple were being evacuated. My favorite forests, my friends’ homes, my favorite trails and campsites were all burning. This was not nature’s fault. This was not normal. When neighborhoods near me were burning, when I learned that animals were going extinct 114 times faster than usual, when half the world population is supposed to be homeless by the time I’m 65, when there are more environmental refugees fleeing from environmental disasters than political refugees fleeing from wars and other conflicts, when my ability to simply live in a habitable world is at risk – how could I focus on anything else? I fight climate change because it’s real, because not enough is being done about it, and because my life depends on it. I fight climate change because in twenty years when it’s too late, I don’t want to look back and regret that I didn’t do more. Will you regret that you didn’t do more? (Click to watch, 1:14)

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