I care about climate change and environmentalism because I grew up on a farm in the middle of nowhere Pennsylvania. I’ve been outdoors my entire life and have begun to notice changes. The bullfrogs stopping croaking at all hours of the day. Smokestacks poked above the tree lines, billowing smoke. The local rivers were blocked off from the public. They were no longer safe for humans to swim in. My teachers told me it was because of pollution, Winters are less snowy and last longer into the Spring. Fewer snow days, Overall, not much but it definitely peaked my interest. I came to college with concerns but little experience. I am a part of the School of Public Affairs Leadership Program and am in the Environment and Sustainability group. We are working to raise money for local nonprofits to lessen pollution in DC’s rivers. I am continuing to learn the different between rural, urban, and suburban environmentalism. There are many facets of environmental injustice that I had no idea about before now.
Taking this concern and doing something with it had been a goal of mine. I am interested in law but do not have a focus decided as of now. Environmentalism and conservation and law are connected in many ways. Lawsuits occur often over the rights of whose land is whose to abuse. Children are getting sicker everyday over poisoned taps. Now that people are starting to realize the effect they are having on the Earth, there is more disagreement about environmental health. That intersection is easy to see. As we move forward though, I believe the intersection will widen. Opening up more cases like Flint, MI. People are going to be put in danger by the suffering environment. I believe the disagreement between people are environment will turn from a ‘this will occur’ to ‘this is occurring and people are sick’. Environmental Law will become a battle between the Earth and its people harming each other because it will just keep getting worse. I find this will apply to everyone, including me, because there is no escape from climate change and educators, lawyers, protective forces, and people will have to stand up against it.