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How College Women Are Using the Election To Fight For The Environment

Heatwaves, wildfires, droughts, hurricanes… if all the extreme weather we’ve been experiencing isn’t a sign that climate change is an actual thing, then I don’t know what is.

The US was the second highest carbon dioxide emitter in 2015, according to a study by Union of Concerned Scientists. Trump’s announcement of the U.S. withdrawal from the Paris Climate Agreement in 2017 caused outrage worldwide as well as worry about what impact a country as powerful as the U.S. leaving the agreement could have for the future of environmental intervention. The government announced that antipollution and fuel efficiency rules for cars would be relaxed, according to The New York Times.

With only one planet to live on (until Mars becomes habitable, at least), government involvement and intervention in environmental issues is crucial to better our impact on the environment and secure a healthy future for ourselves and earth’s other inhabitants — and it seems quite clear that the U.S. could be doing more.

So with that thought in mind and with the election right around the corner, Her Campus asked college women how they’ll be using the 2020 election to fight for the environment. Here’s what they said:

“We only have one planet and we need to take care of it, if not then mother nature is going to bite back.” – Bailey 

“There are measures pertaining to the environment on the ballot, and I hope to use them to show politicians that the environment is important to voters. Any opportunity to have your voice heard should be taken advantage of, and I think that environmental issues can be ignored in favor of more tie sensitive problems. However, the environment can’t be ignored.” – Anonymous 

“Because the environment needs big changes so that the world thrives instead of dies.” – Yolany 

“In this election, I plan to vote for people who recognize that 1) climate change is real and 2) is possibly the most serious issue facing us right now. This means they must be committed to reaching across the aisle and working with members of other countries to work on a solution. Hopefully, people who care about the environment realize that this administration has taken a problematic approach to solving climate change in that they have backed out of the Paris Climate Agreement, continue to enthusiastically undo pollution regulations, and continue to enthusiastically support legislation that does not seriously reprimand companies for having an adverse effect on the environment. The only way to remedy this is to vote-in the midterms- for people who know we don’t have an option when it comes to protecting the earth.” – Anonymous 

“It’s a bit dramatic, but we are destroying the earth and we need laws to prevent this worsening.” – Grace 

“We all have our own places to call a home but the earth is a home we all share together. And it is high time we take care of our home.” – Anne 

Elizabeth is a second year student at Durham University, studying Sociology and Anthropology. She is currently a News x Social Media Intern at HC headquarters in Boston and has been involved in the Durham University chapter of Her Campus since January 2018.