Climate doom and climate change

Is our planet genuinely going to be unlivable one day? Are we able to do anything to help the Earth?

Illustration by Stevie Esteban | Climate doom refers to the idea that our planet will be unlivable within a decade.

From our own personal trials to the most-read headline in the nation, we are not short on events that raise never ending concern. Climate change has been a conversation for a while now, as has whether it is as serious of an issue as it has been made out to be. Specifically, within the last few years, there has been a growing number of articles and social media posts stressing this and what has been called “climate doom.” 

So what is climate doom? Well, it’s the idea that our planet is basically going to be unlivable within the next decade or so. This concept, while trying to bring attention to a very serious matter, has gone about it in the wrong way. The fear-based tactic to get people to care more about the Earth is one that I think is, simply put, wrong. I don’t think that placing fear into people is ever the right way to go about things, even for something as serious as our planet. Oftentimes, we aren’t even offered accessible ways to help the environment. Are we even the ones to blame though?

I spoke with University of Washington Tacoma professor, Michael Kucher, about his thoughts on climate change and the idea of climate doom. We had a great discussion about climate change as well as the many aspects that are in play. One thing that he pointed out was the idea that we know when the world is going to end. 

“We think we know how much time we have,” Kutcher said. “And the way we are responding to the issue may not be quick enough.” 

Why is this though? Wouldn’t you think that we would be more concerned about the only inhabitable planet we currently have? 

Professor Kucher says there are “lots of good reasons to fear change,” especially with big oil companies creating so many jobs. 

Illustration via Canva

Which basically means that we are prioritizing wealth and capitalism over our planet. 

With this in mind, what are younger generations doing to try to guarantee their future? It’s actually a very interesting thing. Professor Kucher brought up the Gen-Z group in Europe suing their government for the climate crisis to hopefully get government officials to start creating change at the executive level. He also mentioned President Biden’s hand in moving towards a greener America with the Inflation Act. This definitely puts things into perspective when thinking about the state of our planet. I personally have found that, while change has been slow, there is so much more to come. 

After our long conversation about climate change and the doomsday mentality, I asked Professor Kucher what he thought was the most important thing for students to take away from this. He gave a lot of advice, but his biggest recommendation was that the younger generations should “run for something,” whether it be a simple mayor position in your hometown or a seat in the senate, run for something. This is how we create change and how we can begin to preserve the planet and our environment. 

In short, the planet is in the process of becoming uninhabitable, but we still have the time to change that. While environmentally-friendly products and ethical brands are fairly inaccessible to the majority, we have a voice and the ideas that can change our future for the better.