""My generation is losing our forests. We are losing our homes. It’s not too late to ensure my generation has a livable future. But we need to listen to the science and act now.." ~ Xiuhtezcatl
I have always enjoyed playing and floating wooden boats in a stream near my house in Boulder, but the water levels have decreased over the past several years. And I know this is a result of how much we use fossil fuels. I love hiking and playing in forests near Colorado’s Brainard Lake but it makes me sad to visit there now because almost all of the pine trees are dead because of the pine beetles who don’t die in the winters because it just doesn’t get as cold as it used to.
I have been an activist like my mother and father for all of my life. I organize grassroots actions like protesting the coal power plant and advocating for renewable energy at my City Council. And I perform rap songs in schools and speak at events all over Colorado. I know my voice makes a difference.
You can screen Xiuhtezcatl's video in your own community to start a discussion on climate change, and the resulting impacts on forests and water systems. Using the screening guide below, and other resources, your community can become more aware of the climate crisis. And do something about it.
Xiuhtezcatl's story is one of nine short films about young people across the U.S. who have been affected by climate change. This film series helps to put a human face on climate change to let people know this is about our future survival.
But,it's not over, and I am still part of the Federal lawsuit because I am a member of Kids vs Global Warming. You can become a Friend of the Court and sign this Amicus Brief to make sure your voices are counted when that case goes into appeal.
If you are a youth who would like to take legal action in your own state, you and/or your parent can contact us to find out what is happening in your state. You can help hold your government accountable to the public trust doctrine that protects the atmosphere as a public resource.
Sign the Friend of the Court Petition Here.
As a leader of Earth Guardians, my family's non-profit, I've spoken to my City Council several times to advocate for policies to protect our natural environment and reduce carbon emissions. And I helped organize the iMatter March here in Denver in 2011.
I was also invited to speak to international leaders in Rio, Brazil at the UN Conference on Sustainable Development and in Australia for a youth sustainability conference.
by Xiuhtezcatl Martinez
The pine beetles are not dying anymore in the winter because it is so much warmer and they are able to move to higher altitudes which has never been recorded in history. I just learned that pine beetles are able to have two life cycles a year because of climate change which will increase the death of our forests by sixty times. We have already lost almost two million acres about 70 percent of all of our states Lodgepole pine. The entire population will be wiped out in the next few years. Read More
I'm speaking at the youth event at the UN Conference on Sustainable Development in June 2012.
Here is a hip-hop song I wrote and performed around Colorado and in Rio, Brazil.