I support Professor Kees Stigter of Agromet Vision and INSAM who during a Seminar on Agrometeorlogy and sustainable development held in Harare recently stated “We can fight about the causes and impacts but it (climate change) is undeniable, it is a reality.”
As a people, we are more inclined to be motivated to action by how we feel about something as opposed to facts and figures. The business as usual attitude will continue to prevail and life will go on as usual for as long as the climate change issue is not brought “home”.
In my humble opinion, (humility is a claim in this instance) climate change has a human face. It is more about people than it is of science, politics, facts or fiction. It is about our families, our friends, and our relationship with them and the world around us.
My conviction is that climate change has the potential to define us, to define our era, and ultimately to determine the legacy we leave for generations to come. As a result, young people hold the future in their hands.
Before we get ahead of ourselves, we need to be sure that we are aware of the changes occurring around us. Do we know what climate change is? How does it affect our lives, the lives of our families and friends and generations to come? Above all, as young people, what can we do?
I humbly (yet another claim of humility!) propose a 3 step action plan for young people who wish to shape the future regarding this critical (without sounding alarmist, of course) issue.
First and foremost, we need to get informed. Trying to make a difference without gaining an in-depth understanding of the matter at hand would be futile. It would be as senseless as pitching up to a nuclear war with spears, slingshots, bows and arrows (no matter how many of these weapons you bring to battle, they are inappropriate). Getting information and gaining an understanding of the climate change issue will ensure that we get involved. Get informed!
Once we have been informed, we need to take action. Most importantly we need to take and lead action. The future belongs to us. As young people we are most at stake (again, without sounding alarmist!). We cannot afford to stand aside and let our future be determined by those who may not be a part of it. We should take a stand for the future we want!