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The student news site of Lake Forest Academy

The Spectator

The student news site of Lake Forest Academy

The Spectator

Regaining hope in climate action: it can start at LFA!

Photo by Kerry Cedergren
LFA Sustainability club building the new compost!

Why should I compost and recycle if I already know the planet is dying off? This is a common misconception that many individuals have when it comes to being sustainable. While the warming of the planet may not be reversible at this point, that does not mean that we cannot work towards prolonging human existence on Earth. 

Many have begun to lose hope in making efforts to protect the planet, not only because they think it is “too late” to do anything, but also because they don’t believe that their own sustainable efforts are going to make a difference. 

When people don’t see the immediate results play out in front of them or see others combatting their efforts, they get discouraged. Dr. Kerry Cedergen, a science teacher at LFA who also leads the school’s Sustainability Initiative , related by saying, “I understand the frustration, I get frustrated on a daily basis. I see people take a half eaten bagel and throw it in the recycling bin or use single use plastic and have no issue with it.” 

As someone who devotes her daily life to being sustainable, she relates to people losing hope when everyone else around them is doing the exact opposite. Unfortunately, many fall into the thinking of, “If the majority isn’t doing anything to fight this cause, then what kind of impact am I really going to have?”

If one is wondering whether or not their single recycled paper plate is going to make a significant change in the world—It isn’t. A few individuals’ choices are not going to stop the global temperature from drastically increasing. However, that is not a reason to give up hope on taking climate action. Combating this issue on a large level starts with individuals actively choosing to be a part of a movement that is striving to create change. 

An article from The Guardian that is centered around tips to take part in climate action stated, “As citizens of the Earth, we have a responsibility to participate. As citizens massed together, we have the power to affect change, and it is only on that scale that enough change can happen.” 

When we, as a global community, decide to take action and join this movement, only then will we have the chance to potentially prolong humanity’s time on this planet.   

Within our LFA community is a perfect example on how we can all join this climate action movement. We can begin with choosing to compost our leftovers in STU, using less single-use plastics, and encouraging our peers to do these things through educating them. 

Cedergen stated, “I always think that if I can spread my knowledge and my ways and lifestyle that I think is going to help the planet, then I can pass those onto you. You can help and pass it onto someone else, and a domino effect takes place. It’s not going to be an overnight thing.” 

Remaining determined is essential to the human race’s existence and if we want to stretch that hope, maybe LFA could make its way to joining a larger movement of schools who have gone completely sustainable! 

Ultimately, as Cedergren encouraged, “You’re doing things not just for yourself, you’re doing it for the world.”

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About the Contributor
Emma Swanson, Managing Editor of Social Justice

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