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To my future grandchildren,

When I was younger, I would often go out fishing with my dad. We’d get up early in the morning, pack some food and drinks, and head out to the lake, where we would spend the whole day fishing and spending time together. Sometimes we would catch a lot of fish; sometimes we wouldn’t catch anything, but, I always look back on those times as some of the best days I could have had. That lake is still there, and it’s still as full of fish as it was when I was young, but there are a lot of things happening right now that might change that.

Nowadays, the world is a lot different than it was even ten years ago. The world has spent a lot of time moving forward, but we’ve done a lot of harm in the process.  One of the most harmful things we’ve done has really come to a head now, and that’s climate change.  It’s currently 2017, and my country, the United States, has elected into office someone who does not believe in it.  A lot of scientists disagree, though, and I follow the science. Climate change is real, and it’s very misunderstood by a lot of people. All of the damage we’ve done in the past has culminated right now, and it will continue to get worse if we don’t change. I believe in progress, and I believe in the pursuit of knowledge, but I am sorry that we have chosen such a poor way to achieve that knowledge. Right now, I’m afraid about what is going to happen as we continue to move forward.

Yet, even though the outcome right now isn’t the best, there is still hope.  Around the world, countries are recognizing that the planet cannot be abused the way it has been in the past, and we as a whole are moving toward fixing the problems we created.  New technology is created every day, but this time that technology is pushing us toward a better future. People all over the world are working to change how we do things now to become something that we can be proud of showing all of you. Our energy is becoming cleaner, our transportation is polluting less with every new model of car, and the people of the world are acknowledging the problems we created. We continue to move forward, but this time we do so cleanly and with a greater understanding of how our actions affect the world.

A lot of people believe that individuals can’t do enough to change the world, but there is plenty that we can do that adds up to something greater. As I continue to live, I will move away from gasoline and coal, opting instead for green energy. I can move away from my habits of consuming and throwing away, instead focusing on making the things I have last by caring for them well and fixing them when they break. I can plant trees, and every year there will be three new ones put in the ground: one for me, one for my country, and one for you, so that the future will be as clean as it was long before I was born. The things I alone do won’t be enough to make up for all the harm we as a whole have done, but I will do them anyway. I will work to fix what we broke for my future and your present.

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