The Global Climate Strike on Sept. 20 struck a major shift in the global movement against climate change, with the Dallas protest bringing in hundreds of people from North Texas to voice their opposition to the government’s inaction on the world-ending disasters that may be soon to come.

However, the rise of the major movement seems to have skipped over campus. There was no major strike action on campus grounds, no major groups on campus pledging to attend local climate events and — most troubling — little to no action taken on campus to address the climate crisis.

Landry Rhodes

Rhodes is a political science sophomore and Community Voices columnist for The Shorthorn.

Though the effects of climate change are already being felt in areas such as India and Bangkok, there seems to be little concern among UTA students toward a possible world-ending catastrophe. Students at other schools, such as the University of North Texas, held dedicated climate strikes with hundreds of students in attendance. Even our friends at Texas A&M University had their own climate strike

And yet, if you traveled to the University Center mall Sept. 20, what would you see? The regular groups of people milling around or walking to their classes, as if an event straight out of a disaster film weren’t within our lifetime.

The only real climate strike action came from students traveling to Fort Worth rather than attempting to start one on campus.

This could reflect the lack of political culture at UTA, with only a small amount of political groups being active on campus. However, climate change is not inherently a political issue.

The fact that a large sum of people dismiss the potential destruction of the earth as left-wing hysteria will only make the situation worse.

There are many things people can do as individuals to save energy and diminish their carbon output, such as recycling proper materials and utilizing public transportation instead of using their cars.

However, there is a collective source of carbon emissions that requires mass protest to be defeated.

According to a 2017 study by the Climate Accountability Institute, around 100 companies have been responsible for over 70% of carbon emissions since 1970. This includes some of the largest corporations today, such as ExxonMobil, BP and Chevron.

Recent events, such as the protests at Fort Worth, have shown that it is possible to generate massive crowds to protest these issues.

People are clearly against the damage being done to our planet and the government’s inaction to improve it. Despite this, however, a majority of people are not willing to go out and protest.

For the sake of the planet itself, there needs to be a massive amount of support against climate change. Whether it be through joining future climate strikes, contacting student government to create meaningful reforms or even making simple changes to our everyday schedule, there needs to be change if we are to continue inhabiting our home for generations to come.


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