In the past few weeks, many of the politic-savvy professors that we've interviewed have pointed out climate change and environmental regulation as being hot-button topics in today’s political climate.
With a gubernatorial election in Louisiana and a nationwide presidential race fast approaching, LSU Students may be looking to address sustainability from a student perspective.
The National Public Radio Station recently came out with new reports regarding one way that Gen-Z is making a positive impact on climate change.
Like Baby Boomers had hippies and Gen-X had nihilists, a new group of environmentally conscious people has emerged in a growing trend referred to as, “VSCO Girls.
VSCO Girls derived from the photo-editing app of their namesake, and are often defined by wearing oversized t-shirts, carrying Hydroflask water bottles and metal straws, and bringing back the scrunchie trend.
However, these girls are doing more than just trend-setting. A recent NPR podcast cites them as being the first large group of their generation to bring being environmentally conscious into the mainstream, promoting the use of reusable drinking products, an appreciation for nature, and thrifting.
Various organizations began to align this phenomenon with being a positive step in the right direction regarding the issue of climate change following sixteen-year-old Greta Thunberg’s message to world leaders at the United Nations this week.
"You all come to us young people for hope. How dare you? You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words, and yet I'm one of the lucky ones," Thunberg said at the Climate Action Summit in New York last week. "People are suffering. People are dying. Entire ecosystems are collapsing."
LSU Professor and Dean for the College of Coast and Environment, Chris D’Elia, says that while he believes there is a climate change problem right now, the situation is not as dire as some would say.
D’Elia also says that there are many ways that students at LSU can make a positive impact on the environment in their daily lives, including eating locally, taking advantage of mass transit, and bringing awareness to the community.
"I think we need to educate people more, I find that general knowledge about energy and environment are very, very poor," D'Elia said. "So we do things like that, and I think we're gonna find ourselves in a better and more secure position for the future."
Project Drawdown, one of the worlds leading climate solution resources lists refrigerant management as of the being one of the areas in which we could reduce CO2 emissions the most.
Other than Saving the Turtles and keeping an eye on how world leaders are addressing climate change, there are many ways that all LSU students can do their part in the environmental movement.
But for now, these Gen Z-ers may serve as the first signs of cultivating a community for today’s students to begin to address climate change with.