Climate change is happening now, all around us. We see it in wildfires, heat waves, coastal flooding, and droughts. To protect the people and places that we love, we need to reimagine and rebuild our present and future. We have an opportunity to think differently, to work differently, to engage differently, and to approach climate change in a fair and just way for all Californians. With this goal in mind, the California Coastal Commission invites California middle and high school students to present a video response to the question:
WHAT DOES CLIMATE JUSTICE LOOK LIKE TO ME?
Entry deadline: midnight March 31, 2021
Not all Californians experience pollution and climate change equally. Low-income communities, people of color, indigenous people, people with disabilities, older or very young people, womenall can be more susceptible to risks posed by climate change. Having fewer burdens and greater wealth, for example, can make it easier to adapt and respond to climate changes. Climate justice is a concept that focuses on addressing the unequal burdens of climate change and working toward equity in climate change solutions.
Though we are not all equally responsible for causing climate change, thinking about what we can do to limit it and prepare for the changes that are on the horizon requires all of us to work together. At the community level, for example, we can think about how much fossil fuel we use when we travel, how we protect public beaches for recreation, how our food is grown and how far it travels before we eat it, where our energy comes from, and whether our community supports "green" jobs. What do these systems look like in your vision of climate justice, and how do they work for your community?
Read more about climate justice from Yale Climate Connections.
Climate justice is related to the concept of environmental justice, which is explored in this video from Grist. Learn more about environmental justice and access related classroom lessons for educators.
You can also enter your video in the California Student Media Festival, sponsored this year by California State Parks. Learn more.
Click on the titles below to read more.
Noah Christman, Director of Public Programming, San Francisco Bay Area Planning and Urban Research Association
Whitney Cohen, Education Director of Life Lab and a lecturer at UC Santa Cruz
Tony Hale, PhD, Program Director for Environmental Informatics, San Francisco Estuary Institute
Chris Neighbors, Producer
Elena Perez, Environmental Resilience Lead at the World Economic Forum
Amee Raval, Senior Policy Researcher at Asian Pacific Environmental Network
And California Coastal Commission staff