by Taylor Brandenburg, Shir Toledo, Elowyn Ingler, Samantha Welch & Sonya Saydakova.
The Environmental Awareness Club at our high school was founded in September of 2019. The club was founded because of the members’ and the faculty sponsors’ passion for making their communities more eco friendly, educating people about environmental issues at hand, and making sure they are treating the earth the best that they can. The club sponsors are Ms. Uludag and Ms. Pinkerton, and our members are Taylor ’21(president) Samantha ’21 and Sonya ’21 (co-presidents), Elowyn ’24, Shir ’22, Freyja ’24, and Sophia ’23. On Wednesday’s announcements on Jan 27, Shir spoke of some of the things we have done as a club and some of the things we are planning to do. Elowyn spoke of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, Sonya spoke of the World Health organization, and finally Samantha talked about the Paris Climate Accord. (Photos below are courtesy of Taylor Brandenburg ’21)
A few of the things we have done as a club are putting up stickers around the school above the trash and recycling to make a more efficient system for waste, Samantha wrote a proposal for an interdisciplinary week last year in which we cleaned a creek filled with trash and a beach, and we are planning a potential clean up day with the whole high school when restrictions are lifted or when we can figure out a safe way to do what we want to. Earlier this year we each made a list of individual goals we want to accomplish, like drinking more plant based milk instead of cow milk, reducing our personal amount of waste, and shopping from thrift stores. Also during the club fair last year, we had the middle school students help with making the natural lip balms and tea bags we made and sold at the club fair, which aligns with one of our goals: to unite the school community through doing things that are eco-friendly.
More than 250 animal species rely on the Arctic Refuge’s diverse habitats including wolves, muskoxen, wolverines and caribou. Many species of birds rely on the Arctic Refuge during the summer months before migrating to every state in the U.S. and across six continents. President Biden’s administration announced plans for a temporary moratorium on oil and gas leasing in the wildlife refuge. These plans came on Biden’s first day in office. This is really good, because the oil industry has had some very negative effects on the environment.
The scientific community applauded President Joe Biden’s decision to rejoin the World Health Organization and other global efforts designed to stop and prevent COVID-19. Practical, because U.S. funding will help the agency balance its budget, fulfill its commitments to boost public health, and protect Americans from new strains of COVID-19 and future disease threats. And symbolic, because the United States was the agency’s largest funder and has long been a key player on the global health stage.
In one of his first acts as President, Biden signed letters retracting his predecessor’s decision to withdraw from WHO. He also appointed Dr. Anthony Fauci, head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, to represent the United States on the world body’s executive committee.