Amanda Cronin’s Interview with Chelsea Clinton

Climate change is impacting everyone on the planet and its effects will only intensify as the atmosphere gets progressively more concentrated with carbon dioxide. We need to act now to curb the negative effects of climate change, or else it will be too late.

We all know and have heard this refrain thousands of times. But how do we act? And how can we, as kids, make a tangible change to the world, and still catch the school bus every morning? Where is the guide for young activists who want change now?

Chelsea Clinton is here to help with her new book It’s Your World, an informative read filled with lessons about how kids can impact their world, and stories of kids who already are. I was fortunate to have the opportunity to speak with Chelsea about It’s Your World!

What inspired you to write this book now?

I continue to be struck by the curiosity of young people. Adults should recognize that young people are taking charge and are engaged in making a difference. Knowing that I was going to become a mom lent a greater urgency to writing this book because I felt even more of a responsibility. I wanted to empower young people to make a difference across our country and across the world.

I am part of iMatter, a youth-powered organization dedicated to demanding climate action. My generation is inheriting this planet and we want to live in a healthy and safe world. What advice do you have for kid-driven groups trying to get our voices heard on issues like climate change?

It’s both easier and harder right now to get your voice heard. It is easier because the UN is set to confirm sustainable developmental goals, the Pope is talking about climate change, and we have the big Climate Change Summit in Paris at the end of the year. There’s a lot happening, so it is harder to have your group’s specific voice heard because more people are talking about it.

The real question is, how do you pick an issue where you think you would have an impact? Whether you want recycling programs to work differently in Chappaqua or Westchester County, or you want to target companies to lessen their pollution output, or you want the federal government to set standards on emissions. If you are going to lend your voice and your energies towards something, know what are you trying to achieve. You have to insure that you are directing your attention toward whomever has real leverage to make a difference in those areas, and then run towards that issue as fast as you can.

You seem to be really hopeful and optimistic about the capability of today’s kids to tackle these huge issues. Why do you believe that we can?

Because you already are! I hope that is apparent for anyone that reads It’s Your World. Kids are already profoundly impacting such things as the health of their families, saving iconic species like elephants, and helping school environments become safer. The strong answer to your question is all the stories that I am so grateful to be able to share about kids who are making real, tangible, meaningful impact across the world today.

 

Thank you so much for talking with me today!

Thank you for being interested in It’s Your World!

1Comment
  • Kathy Mohr-Almeida, Ph.D.
    Posted at 16:09h, 28 October

    Nice work Amanda! Chelsea offered great advice – find the folks with the leverage. It is also about taking legal actions – attacking the problem from multiple fronts. I am glad to have you as a team mate to deal with the climate crisis. Each of us has a role to play, no matter how great or how small. We are very close to the tipping point!