On Thursday, March 21st, students from South High School’s Green Tigers environmental group collaborated with members Alexis Boxer and Tim Harlan-Marks of the Sierra Club to raise awareness about the Keystone XL pipeline. The 60 students who came learned about the difference between sustainable and non-sustainable energy. At the end, the students were given postcards to write President Obama about what needs to change in order for a sustainable future.
South student Anna Kleven commented, “It’s pretty hard to reach high schoolers on something that can seem kind of irrelevant like the environment, but Alexis and Tim hit it on the head—they were funny and the presentation was super informative and went beyond the basics. I heard a lot of people telling their friends about it!” This is a problem many have faced when targeting youth. South student Shira Breen urges, “This message needs to reach all youth. I still feel like students lack a sense of urgency when it comes to environmental issues.”
South’s event is in the process of changing the apathy problem in youth. If one were to watch the students listen to entertaining speakers preach about environmental issues, it would be obvious that they were engaged and interested. At the letter writing, Green Tigers got almost all of the students to sign their name and give it back to mail.
“Our environmental conference managed to reach a lot of people and send a powerful message,” Breen remarked. “Alexis and Tim were very inspiring and seemed to open our eyes and show us the relevance and necessity of action at all levels, from school projects to global movements. The action aspect of our event created a sense of involvement and allowed for people to act after being inspired.”