“I am an environmentalist because it’s the morally correct way of life.” By Frances Petrufova

Why am I an environmentalist? Especially a young environmentalist? Why do I worry? Why do I try? Why do I care?

The answer is rather simple, but it would appear that many people do not understand it. I have a moral issue with the way we live. There is a little Mother Earth sitting on my shoulder making me feel guilty about disrespecting her. To me, it doesn’t seem logical why we, myself included, do things that we know have bad consequences, even if they affect us in the long run or don’t affect us directly. Why do we insist on sabotaging ourselves? If we believe that we are the most intelligent species on the planet, the species gifted with conscience and the ability to distinguish between right and wrong, why do we act with such utter stupidity?

I was recently told by somebody that they didn’t believe in the climate crisis, that they didn’t think human action was the driving force behind accelerated global warming, but rather that it was all a big hoax and the real reason behind the rising temperatures was some huge celestial mass travelling through the universe causing interference to our planet. While I don’t doubt the possibility of its existence, I fail to comprehend how someone quite intelligent and well educated is able to fully believe in some theory, but not in scientific evidence.

It is true that from the day I was born, I was raised to be environmentally conscious, and some might say that I’m an environmentalist because I was raised to be one. However, my mother didn’t use reusable nappies because she wanted to raise my siblings and me to be environmental ‘’gurus’’. All she did was use her intelligence, her ‘’superior brain’’, to come to the logical conclusion that using something with the life of a few hours and the death of 500 years was absolute nonsense, and completely immoral and irresponsible. Assuming that a generation is 30 years, another 16 generations would have to live with my nappies. That is a) disgusting and b) equally amazing and horrifying. Why do we create something so durable just to use it once? Where is the logic in that?

What I am trying to say is that I am not an environmentalist by choice, or because of the influence of something or somebody. I am an environmentalist because it’s the morally correct way of life. Maybe there is some big celestial body in the galaxy affecting our little planet, I’m not an astronomer or physicist, I can’t say. What I do know, however, is that nothing excuses the sheer disrespect we have for our home and for future generations, and I refuse to be a part of that disrespect. I am a young environmentalist because I have to be.

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