It should come as no surprise that I believe in the power of protest. That’s why I moved to Washington to start what I call Fire Drill Fridays, joining the millions of young people around the world who turned out in the fall for protests to demand that our leaders act to save their futures.
We must all face the harsh reality that our planet is rapidly approaching an irreversible tipping point, beyond which the unraveling of our ecosystems will be beyond our control. Scientists have made clear that we now have less than 11 years to reduce fossil fuel and other greenhouse gas emissions roughly by half, and 20 years after that to cut them to net zero, to stabilize the rise in temperatures by the end of the century and meet the goal of the Paris agreement on climate change.
Last summer — as the wildfires wreaked havoc on my home state, California, and young people like Greta Thunberg so powerfully reminded us that we are the last generation that can prevent an unthinkable global catastrophe — I decided it was time for me to do more.
There are many things we can all do. We can join protests, engage in civil disobedience and risk arrest, but we must also see this as the uniquely critical political moment it is.