Our STUDENT LEADERS
Meet some of the students who are leading the call for Minnesota take climate action and limit greenhouse gas pollution now, not later.
SHAZA Hussein, 16, Rosemount
"I am concerned about climate change because It directly impacts the most
vulnerable communities around the world, including back home in Sudan. I am a
member of the leadership core at Youth Environmental Activists of Minnesota.
There I help plan and lead events relating to climate justice. Recently, I presented
to my local government about the impacts of climate change on the city of Rosemount. This effort has provided us the effort to present to city council which has now asked us to draft a resolution that they will sign to urge the federal government to acknowledge and take action on climate change."
Lia Harel, 17, Minnetonka
"Climate change is not just about polar bears standing on shrinking icebergs; it's
about the food insecurity in Somalia, the scorching wildfires in California, the
oceans creeping menacingly into Bangladesh, the choking smog in China, and the extreme heat and snowstorms in Minnesota. Climate change affects every aspect of our life, and we must be able to defeat it before it defeats us. As the President
of Hopkins High School Earth Club, I lead volunteer efforts that educate others about the issues relating to climate change and organize activities that address some of these issues."
alina hyder, 15, rochester
"Climate change is a problem that people don’t recognize because it is progressing
slower than other problems in our world. It’s interesting to see how Minnesota itself had changed throughout the past few years weather wise. Winters are longer and the weather can change very fast within a week. I’ve held a climate convening and have gone to climate related workshops. I am also in an environmental club at school."
SOPHia Faacks, 17, Minneapolis
"I am concerned about climate change because humans are messing up the
environment which doesn't just hurt humans, but it hurts all of the plants and animals
we share the planet with. We are currently undergoing a mass extinction that's been sped up enormously by climate change and other human actions."
rachel poppleton, 13, st. paul / ely
"I am concerned about climate change because it will affect many people's future.
All of the world will be affected by it. I am also concerned because we are already seeing the effects of climate change. By the time that I am grown up, it will be
much worse. I personally am really concerned about the future of cross country skiing because our winters are getting less snow. I think it would be sad for other people to not get to enjoy this sport. I have been to the March for Science and Youth Lobby Day to share my concern. At home we compost and recycle and buy wind and solar energy."
JASON KRAFT, 11, St. Louis Park
" I care about climate change because it is going to impact kids more than adults and
we haven't created it. Climate change is probably the most important issue there is.
If we don’t stop it then all other issues aren't going to matter, because we’re not going to be here anymore. I’ve spoken at two school board meetings and at St. Louis Park’s Climate Action Plan Kickoff event. I am part of a group asking the school
district to commit to 100% renewable electricity by 2025 (my graduation year). I also helped organize a Kids Climate March in Minneapolis."
MARCO HUNT, 17, Minneapolis
"I am concerned about climate because of the impact it has on me and the future
generations. I used to work on a youth farm for Native kids and when I was there I saw how my elders were having trouble finding the plants or animals that used to be in this part of Minnesota. They told me about prophesies that predicted global warming and pipelines and that really made it feel personal for me. My ancestors knew this would happen and did their best to fight for their lives for the future generations, so I am doing the same thing."
katie christiansen, 16, st. louis park
"I’m concerned about climate change because I believe it has already damaged my
future. We have so many unique and inventive solutions waiting to be implemented and we also have a lot of people waiting to take action and if we connect those two we could see real change and improvement of my future and the future of my generations’ children. In February, I got the opportunity to speak at a city council meeting where our cities’ Climate Action Plan passed, committing us to become carbon neutral by 2040. At the same meeting, I was appointed as a youth member to my cities’ Environment and Sustainability Commission."
VIKAS PRASAD, 17, Rochester
"I am most concerned about the increasingly common outlook on climate change
that it is not man made and that an increasing number of people believe that it
does not exist. I am part of the Olmsted County Youth Commission where we attempt to instigate change in the community not only through volunteering but also by meeting with officials in the community and letting the youth's voices be heard. Another committee I am part of is the Olmsted County Environmental Committee where I listen to different environmental issues people in Olmsted county are facing and the committee decides on what the best course of action is."
will poppleton, 11, St. Paul / Ely
"I am concerned about climate change because it is hurting Minnesota animals and changing winter. I'm worried about how much lakes are warming up and how that might hurt fish that are living there. I also love skiing and don't like having to ski on the machine made snow we have to race on a lot."
lucas nerbonne, 15, minneapolis
“Climate change is something that effects everyone. Everyone, in one way or many will feel the detrimental effects of climate change in their everyday life. In that way, it's the most important fight of our time. Climate change is something that also disproportionately affects low income communities and communities of color. People who have historically been systematically mistreated by our government and our country shouldn't have to bear the weight of the negative consequences that climate change brings.”