Climate activists from the #GasFreeNYC coalition and elected officials rally and hold a press conference in City Hall Park on Wednesday, Dec. 15, 2021, in New York. Credit: Brittainy Newman / AP

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“There are no passengers on spaceship earth. We are all crew.” —   Marshall McLuhan.

I attend King Middle School in Portland. I am working on an expedition called Engineering our Energy Future. I have been debating, researching and discussing the issue of climate change for over two months. My political message is that individuals and governments need to switch to renewable energy to move into the future.

Looking at a satellite view of the Earth’s ice caps today is shocking. Earth has   lost 28 trillion tons of ice in less than 30 years. Currently, ice sheets are losing   400 billion tons of ice every year, which adds   over one millimeter to global sea level. This is because the   burning of fossil fuels releases carbon dioxide and other heat-trapping gasses into the atmosphere, which warms up the planet. To reduce the amount of carbon going into the atmosphere and meet our country’s goal of net zero emissions everyone will have to do their part. We could all begin by switching to a cleaner and climate-friendly alternative, renewable energy.

In conclusion, to secure a safe future on Earth we need to switch to renewable energy, and we need to do it now. We only have one planet, we cannot afford to waste it.

Evie Jones