Fast-forward 50 years from today – our children and grandchildren will, hopefully, be in a history class learning about what happened in the year 2017 and beyond. Which of the following chapter titles sounds better: “2017: The year the world took a stance against climate change” or “2017: The year the world chose fossil fuels over renewable energy”? I hope you think fighting climate change to guarantee a brighter future for our children and theirs sounds better than decimating the planet with greenhouse gas emissions.
Flipping on a light switch, driving across town, buying food at the grocery store, doing laundry and so many other daily tasks people do influence climate change. Carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases are causing the Earth’s climate to bulge at its seams. At the rate most people are living their lives today, the Earth needs a new pair of pants that cannot be made. As humans, we have one chance – one Earth – and we are blowing it.
The University of Wisconsin should implement an environmental education requirement for students – the world’s next generation of workers, entrepreneurs and CEOs – in order for them to develop a sustainable mindset, which could drastically influence the future climate and habitability of Earth.
A proposed requirement would not add more credits to a student’s course load. Instead, it would take three credits from the natural or physical sciences breadth requirement to be used for the environmental course.
By having a sustainable mindset, students will be empowered to make decisions that are not wasteful. As the workforce of the future, students could have a say in and push for sustainable policy in the workplace.
UW expert looks to encourage students to fight for cleaner futureAs environmental issues become increasingly challenged at the federal level, experts at the University of Wisconsin are continually looking for Read…
Last spring, I took “Principles of Environmental Science” with Cathy Middlecamp. Initially, I was just trying to get my physical science requirement out of the way. This class, however, changed my entire life course. I declared in environmental studies because I realized how much I care about the world and the future of the environment. I want to keep going to national parks and seeing the wonders of nature. I want to show my children the glaciers in Alaska. We need to change our habits now to prevent these and more natural habitats from disappearing.
UW students should be equipped with information required to make environmentally friendly choices for their future and for the collective world’s future. The progression of climate change can be slowed if we change our current habits.
Maddie Bridge is a junior majoring in environmental studies and history.
The environmental education requirement campaign is being headed by the Associated Students of Madison’s Sustainability Committee. We meet on Tuesdays at 7 p.m. in the Student Activity Center Caucus Room on the fourth floor. Please come to our meeting if you want more information or want to help on this campaign, or email [email protected].