Editorial: The climate is changing, so shouldn’t we?



Change Global Climate Warming Burning Earth Heat

Mila Brandson, Editor in Chief

The 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) has served as a symbol of a united international effort against the impending threat of our warming planet. Despite the assembly of world leaders and climate activists, tangible and immediate action still seems to be continuously postponed. Youth activists are praised by many for their hopeful speeches, yet leaders continue to avoid a direct response.

Although many large companies and leaders claim to support climate action, they often wait for other corporations to lead. For example, Coca-Cola, Nestlé, and Pepsi have been named the world’s worst plastic polluters in 2020 for the third consecutive year. While these companies claim to support efforts toward real solutions, they continue to increase their waste production.

A recent analysis by the U.N. found that the sum of current national policies shows a 13.7% increase in global greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 compared to 2010 levels. However, climate scientists advocate for a 50% reduction in emissions by the same date in order to prevent temperatures from rising to irreversible levels. Although recognizing the danger of climate change is a step toward finding a solution, the visible impacts of climate are ongoing. Frequent extreme weather events, receding glaciers, and sea-level rise will only continue to worsen if inaction proceeds, placing the world at stake.

The United States and the world needs its leaders to gather the courage to radically change the traditional societal dependence on fossil fuels and environmental damage. Without role models willing to step outside the pressures of the economy and routine mindsets, it is impossible to garner enough support from other countries to effectively address climate change’s looming challenge. The U.S. needs to step away from its hypocritical urge for action and set the trend for lasting change.

The Viking Logue staff believes enacting the Green New Deal, a bill that would invest in emissions reductions and union employment, is critical in achieving global climate goals. To effectively tackle this widespread issue, we believe our world needs universal collaboration from every corner of the world, starting with our own.