Arts and Entertainment Reporter
Naomi Klein’s Capitalism vs. the Climate lecture at Humber Lakeshore campus auditorium on Wednesday attracted some 600 students and faculty and extended to 225 schools watching the event through a live stream.
Klein began by clarifying that she did not want to depress anyone, but simply inform the younger generation on the issues surrounding climate change.
“The younger you are, the higher the stakes are,” said Klein at the gathering organized by Humber’s Office of Sustainability. “Climate change is going to change everything.”
As said in her book This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. the Climate, Klein emphasized the connection between climate, politics and the economy.
The documentary film This Changes Everything directed by Klein’s husband Avi Lewis, which was shown at the event, will be translated into over 25 languages. Klein will also be awarded the Sydney Peace Prize in November.
Klein attended the UN climate summit known as the Paris Agreement last December. World leaders from all over the world including Prime Minister Justin Trudeau came to an accord to keep the level of global warming under 2 °C.
Yet agreement on the reality of lowering fossil fuel emissions is harder to reach than expected.
“There is a gap between the temperature target and what governments are willing to do,” said Klein. “We’re not going to change the laws of nature, but we can change political systems.”
Klein is a strong believer that students who engage in environmental movements are “forcing the change” that can lead to political changes that can lift specific demographics.
“We need energy, democracy and justice for our First Nations people,” Klein said.
Citing This Changes Everything, Klein emphasized the importance of Indigenous peoples right within their land.
“Indigenous people and others on the front of industry activity should be the first to receive public support from their own clean energy projects.”
With protests and action being taken in order to stop massive plant building and infrastructure, Klein encourages people to use their “tremendous moral voice.”
“Nowadays, we have great issues regarding ecology and the environment,” said Anna Svinoboeva, a Humber Lakeshore student and Sustainability office volunteer.
“It’s really important someone like Naomi Klein, the leader of this movement can help the youth and adults be conscious about our nature.”
Reaching out to the young people who will be responsible for fixing these environmental issues was Klein’s main goal. She continues to urge students to get involved in environmental change by “fixing the mistakes the generation before you made.”
“Trust what you know about this issue, it will effect everyone and only the future generations can fix it.”