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College Student Urges Peers Not To Have Children Until Real Action On Climate Change Occurs

Emma Lim, 18, is your typical college student going to school in Canada. To some, she might seem a little more “baby crazy” than most — she even has a list of names on her computer that she would name her potential children.

Photo by Sarah Silbiger/Getty Images

Lim has wanted to start a family of her own for as long as she can remember. Being a mom has always been a big deal to her. But as things stand right now, even if she finds the right partner to start a family with, she has vowed not to have any kids at all — not unless her government does more to address climate change.

Lim is critical of governments from around the world, but notes that Canadian lawmakers have failed to address the issue themselves, at least in a way that’s adequate to her, pointing out that Canada is not on pace to meeting its Paris Accord goals, per reporting from the CBC.

“I am giving up my chance of having a family because I will only have children if I know I can keep them safe,” Lim has said.

Upon speaking to her fellow classmates, Lim discovered that many think the way she does about climate change, too. She started a petition, which she unveiled on her personal website this week, which asks participants to pledge “not to have children until I am sure my government will ensure a safe future for them.”

Around 1,200 have signed the pledge as of press time.

Lim goes into detail over why she’s made the decision on her website.

“It breaks my heart, but I created this pledge because I know I am not alone,” Lim said. “I am not the only young person giving up lifelong dreams because they are unsure of what the future will hold.”

According to a survey taken by Insider.com, many Millennials and members of Gen-Z feel similarly to Lim about considerations to starting a family. Among 18- to 29-year-olds who took part in the survey, 2-in-5 say that climate change should play a role in any young person’s decision to have a child or not.



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