A recent study supports what many young climate activists have been telling elected leaders for years.
“Climate change will shape the lives of young people today and in a very drastic fashion,” says Carl Schleussner of Climate Analytics, a nonprofit research institute.
His team looked at the projected frequency and intensity of extreme weather events over the next several decades. They analyzed heat waves, hurricanes, wildfires, and droughts.
“And then we compared how climate change is materializing in the lifetime of different people alive today in 2022,” he says.
The researchers found, for example, that even if current climate policy pledges are implemented, children born in 2020 may experience about seven times more heat waves in their lives than their grandparents did.
The team created a website called My Climate Future where anyone can enter their birth year – or the birth year of their kids and grandkids – and see what their future might look like.
Schleussner says he hopes it helps people understand in more concrete terms how global warming will harm younger generations — and the urgency of climate action.
Reporting credit: Sarah Kennedy/ChavoBart Digital Media and Diana Madson