Creativity offsets climate change

CHS students empowered to make a difference

Dara Fisher

Today’s children will live through three times as many climate disasters as their grandparents, according to The Washington Post. Although some teens may feel powerless in the daunting task of stopping climate change, making an effort is quintessential to reducing the effects.

Robin Webster, leader of the advocacy communication program at the nonprofit Climate Outreach, suggests teens use their creativity and passions to take individual actions to help the environment. From compost gardening to creating art with recycled materials, there are numerous ways that teens are tackling environmental issues head-on and inspiring others to do the same.

“We found that people doing something, even if it’s a small thing, felt much more empowered to talk about it,” Webster said.

This is evident at Communications High School, where students are protecting the environment by putting their passions to use.

“I sew a lot of my own clothes, I thrift a lot and I repair old clothes that I still wear,” said sophomore Molly Mccarthy of Manasquan, who employs her creativity to be more sustainable.

“I also try to cut down on my food and water waste.” Junior Claire Cooperman of Bradley Beach uses a reusable water
bottle in order to reduce plastic waste, which adds up to nearly 360 million tons each year, according to International Veterinary Outreach.

“Living right near the beach, I see firsthand how single-use plastic washes up on the shore and hurts the atmosphere,” Cooperman said.

Karen’s School of Fashion, a sewing school based in Marlboro, New Jersey, provides teens with the opportunity to produce sustainable clothing. Junior Lydia Olivieri of Colts Neck has done many commissions through the school, utilizing her creativity to offset the effects of climate change.

“My favorite part about having a hobby like sewing is realizing that my actions are a really important part of helping the world in small ways,” Olivieri said. “I think it’s less about the outcome of sustainability and more about the fact that it’s all of our responsibility to try.”

Olivieri, alongside other CHS students, is empowered to care for the climate and push past the perception of climate change as an intimidating challenge to face.

“Unfortunately, a lot of concerns surrounding sustainability are being perpetrated by corporations that are so big that it doesn’t seem within any of our individual powers to change,” Olivieri continued. “But I think that if every single person put in a little more work, we might find ourselves in an entirely different situation.”