Hawaii Youth Climate Strike: What’s Being Done

Kacie Huang, News

Hawaii Youth Climate striked on Sept. 20 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. from the Governor’s Mansion to City Hall in downtown Honolulu and was able to gather 1,500 people. 

The strike is working to gradually phase out the use of plastics in efforts to create less waste and maintain Hawaii’s beaches. 

The Hawaii Youth Climate Strike is a student-run organization cooperating with nonprofits for change in environmental laws. The movement was started at Waipahu High School by Kawika Pegram (12) and it now has ambassadors at public and private schools around the island. 

Sept. 20 marked the worldwide Youth Climate Strikes, which fights for laws to counter climate change. The Hawaii Youth Climate Strike, organized by Waipahu senior, Kawika Pegram, gathered 1,500 people at the Hawaii State Capital to march in support of Bill 40, to phase out the use of single-use plastics in Hawaii. Photo and caption by Kacie Huang 2019.

Wilson Tran (11) is the ambassador at Kalani High School. Tran contacted Pegram to fill out an ambassador form when he learned of the organization.

“I just hit him an email saying I wanted to get involved with climate awareness,” Tran said. 

In efforts to get Kalani involved in the strike, Tran reached out to clubs on campus including Leo, Key, HOSA, Japanese, Pacific, and Asian Affairs Council (PAAC), National Honor Society (NHS), Photography, Art, Writing, Laulea, Interact, and Science Club. 

When the Amazon was burning, people saw how little coverage the media had for environmental issues. Tran was inspired to spark change at Kalani. 

“I do hope to reach out more though given more time,” Tran said. He continues to talk to clubs in being more eco-friendly and to join events for the environment like clean-ups, marches, and strikes.

According to The Washington Post, the Amazon forest continuously burning was caused by deforestation to clear land for farming. Since Jair Bolsonaro became Brazil’s President in January, he has been trying to track farmers who may have caused these fires to prevent future damage.