Back in the 20th century, coal miners would take caged canaries down into the mines as an early-warning signal for toxic gases. Fast forward to the 21st century and we see nature’s own early-warning signal of starving polar bears dealing with record ice melt in the Arctic.
Not only is the planet heating up, but so is our oil consumption. Some say we have already hit peak oil. Many of us who are reading this article won’t see the great effects in our lifetime, but rest-assured our youngest generation will.
As we leave them with a legacy of heavily oil-dependent lifestyles, we must show them that there is a way to make positive changes to powering our world from renewable energy sources.
Give your child an iPad and they’ll probably know how to operate it better than you do. They are digital natives who have never known life B.I. (‘Before Internet’). If we introduce them early enough to solar collectors, wind, and wave turbines these too will become part of their native collective.
An energy independent USA is of vital importance to the country’s safety and welfare. The U.S. Energy Information Administration has reported that “The U.S. imported approximately 11.4 million barrels per day of petroleum in 2011 from about 80 countries.” Achieving independence means the vast amount of energy needed for our current and future lifestyles needs to be generated at home. Seeding the idea that young children can help build this independent future is an essential stepping-stone towards this goal.
By 2030, our young children will be young adults who are raising families, owning homes, and building careers. Importantly, they will be the ones making decisions and voting on policy related to energy and environmental issues. They will be designing the new policies to address these issues, and seeking innovative and ethical solutions to the perplexing issues of energy needs and environmental impacts. It is our duty to empower them to make the right choices.
The Power Families book series was created to introduce renewable energy technology to young children through compelling characters, pictures and adventure stories. This entertaining approach makes the technology accessible to even the youngest child. Flo & Mo Power and the Big Storm features wave turbine generators, Max Power and the Bagpipes is about energy from the wind, and Ella Power and the Sun Puppies highlights solar power. Each book includes clean-energy generation as a key plot element, with a diagram of the generators included after the end of the story. “The most important reward is the payoff of a generation of kids who grow up thinking about renewable energy,” said Jonathan Liu, GeekDad Senior Editor for Wired magazine.
Through a partnership with the NWF Eco-Schools Program (National Wildlife Federation) The Power Families book series is being donated to schools across the USA. “The National Wildlife Federation is thrilled to partner with Suse, and to make her books, which inspire students to envision a clean energy future, available to schools…,” says Jennifer Murck, Manager of NWF Eco-Schools USA.
How often do you talk to your child about environmental issues? If you don't at all, tell us why in the comments.
These are solely the author's opinions and do not represent those of TakePart, LLC or its affiliates.