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Indiana Daily Student

OPINION: Even our planet is smiling about our new president-elect

<p>President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris receive a briefing from the transition COVID-19 advisory board Nov. 9 in Wilmington, Delaware.</p>

President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris receive a briefing from the transition COVID-19 advisory board Nov. 9 in Wilmington, Delaware.

As we know by now, the soon-to-be ex-president does not believe in science, and especially not climate change. During the majority of his presidency, I questioned if President Donald Trump even knew what planet he was living on. Whether he knows it or not, it's a planet experiencing a major climate crisis.

Other countries have started taking initiative while we fall behind. Trump decided to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Agreement, a worldwide effort to battle global warming. On top of this, Trump got rid of the Obama Administration’s Clean Power Plan and weakened the Endangered Species Act

In other words, our president was actively helping destroy our planet.

With the new president-elect, there comes hope. Joe Biden has already committed to re-joining the Paris Agreement on his first day in office. Biden also said he intends to pour trillions of dollars into a clean energy plan with the ultimate goal being to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

When Trump was elected, he made a lot of empty promises. Some people in our country might have trust issues, and might be wondering why we can be so sure Biden will hold true to his promises.

We can trust these ambitious plans because Biden does not just have all eyes in our country on him — the rest of the world is watching as well. When Trump dismantled efforts to protect the environment, he broke the trust between the U.S. and the international community.

Several countries have already spoken out about Biden and his plans, and are excited and hopeful that Biden can fix what was broken by Trump.

Science is real — believing otherwise is selfish. Billions of human lives and ecosystems are being destroyed by fools who choose to ignore science.

The scariest part is that this crisis falls on the shoulders of young people. We can go to school and live our lives as if it’s not happening, but in reality, someday all of these people who have chosen not to care about the environment will be 6 feet under, and we will be the ones to burn in the heat.

It has been our generation that has been leading the movement to end climate change, and it is our duty to see it through. It was the pressure that we put on our president-elect that inspired much of the change to come. 

We can also demand drastic changes from those in charge of IU. The reason the U.S. is being put back on track is that a new leader is taking over. Next year, IU will have a new president, and students must demand that they make environmental justice and sustainability a priority.

Maggie Mulligan (she/her) is a sophomore studying recreational therapy and theater. She is a member of the RedStepper Dance Team, Gamma Phi Beta sorority and the Panhellenic Association Diversity and Inclusion board.

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