Climate change is the greatest threat facing our world today. Rising sea-levels, extreme weather events, melting Arctic ice and species extinctions will impose enormous costs on humans and other species, both in terms of ecological health and money. Who will pay those trillions of dollars? Not the generation which is making climate-change decisions today. Instead, it will be us – university students and all other young people.
This is not fair. That’s why we are demanding action to stop climate change.
University of Toronto Environmental Action (UTEA) is made up of students from across the university who are working together for increased awareness of the environmental challenges –in particular climate change and the oil sands – that we all face as Canadians. We are building a coalition of students representing every discipline on the St. George campus who are concerned with the state of our environment and the way it is being abused to the detriment of other species and future generations. No matter how you look at it, the world’s natural systems are under great stress, and as young people it’s imperative we begin to speak out and take action.
It is our generation which will eventually have to live with the environmental consequences of our parents’ generation today. We demand not only consideration, but a larger role in the decisions that will ultimately shape the world we inherit.
We strive to work for greater awareness of environmental issues, especially climate change and the tar sands, but also air and water pollution, farmland degradation, species extinction, and ecosystem collapse. Moreover, as our name suggests, we intend to take action not only to raise environmental consciousness, but to work towards changing unsustainable policies and practices at U of T.
We use a democratic, consensus-based framework for decision making, to make sure that all voices are heard.
Often, issues like climate change can be frightening and overwhelming – we feel powerless. Based on their own statements and actions, it seems as if the people in power today care little for our generation and the planet’s health. However, we can make a difference. And UTEA will.
If we work together, there is much we can accomplish. Students and young people around the world are beginning to take effective action to protect our environment and the world we are about to inherit. Join us, and together we can fight for fairness – for other species and our generation.