On this Earth Day 2022, Young Voices Are Last Real Chance for Saving Our Planet

A Brief Commentary by Doug Draper

Posted on Earth Day, April 22nd, 2022 on Niagara At Large

Was it really just three years ago that a world-wide movement involving unprecedented millions of people to address the climate crisis was on a roll.

That movement, propelled by Greta Thunberg, a Swedish teen activist bursting with purpose and determination, inspired tens of thousands of people to march in Montreal, and inspired people other cities across Canada, including Niagara, raising a voice for action.

One the signs from these marches that stayed has stayed with  me, held up by a young lady who, like Greta, appeared to be in her teens, was painted with the following words; “If You Don’t Act Like An Adult, We Will!”

It was a message that took me back to my own teen years when on the very first Earth Day, on April 22nd of 1970, I joined a group of my high school classmates in a rally in front of an industrial plant in Welland that was notorious back then for spewing thick clouds of filthy smoke across the horizon.

Our Earth Day rally in front of a polluting refinery in Welland 52 years ago. I am the one at the front, wearing the gas mask. We were young and full of purpose back then. We were going to save the planet!

Like so many of the young people marching with Greta, we were filled with a determination that if the adults around us weren’t going to take up the fight, we were.

We were going to  save the planet.

Well, here we are 52 years later and despite warnings scientists were issuing about carbon emissions from human activities fueling climate change back then, we are now being issued warnings from eminent scientists around the world that we have reached “CODE Red” on what has already become a climate crisis of highly destructive storms, floods, droughts, infestations, deadly heat waves and wildfires.

The only hope of avoiding a total catastrophe is to act now.

Teen activist Greta Thunberg helped ignite a global climate action movement

There is no more time for denial and delay, and continuing to build more highways and low-density suburb over what is left of our green space, and subsidizing the carbon fuel industry with tens of billions of dollars, like our governments still do here in Canada, has got to stop.

Unfortunately, the pandemic put a stop to the marches and demonstrations, and distracted a good deal of attention away from the movement that Greta and so many other young people were building in the last decade.

For all of our sake, let’s do what we can to help that movement regain its momentum.

I feel confident that young people will raise their voices again and it is still not too late for the adults in the room to raise their voices too.

  • Doug Draper, Earth Day 2022

If you missed this excellent documentary that CBC’s The Nature of Things aired recently on the climate action movement, I encourage you to click on the screen below –

NIAGARA AT LARGE Encourages You To Join The Conversation By Sharing Your Views On This Post In The Space Following The Bernie Sanders Quote Below.

“A Politician Thinks Of The Next Election. A Leader Thinks Of The Next Generation.” – Bernie Sanders


One response to “On this Earth Day 2022, Young Voices Are Last Real Chance for Saving Our Planet

  1. Check out the Climate Emergency Unit (CEU): https://www.climateemergencyunit.ca

    To learn about the Ontario Climate Emergency Campaign, and to sign on, please visit https://www.ontarioclimateemergency.ca


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