On February 13th CFACT had the opportunity to visit Washington University in Saint Louis, Missouri. It was a productive visit, and CFACT eagerly engaged with the students about the environmental issues facing today’s world. Students from all political beliefs were engaged by CFACT’s message, and many students admitted that CFACT’s unique perspective made sense when it came to using the earth’s resources wisely and responsibly.
CFACT did a wide variety of activities on the campus of Washington University, including tabling, putting up posters, chalking, and a survey. The most popular event was the CFACT table that was hosted in the Edison Family Courtyard. Despite frigid temperatures, students were interested to hear what CFACT had to say, and many stopped by the table. CFACT’s message of using our resources wisely and responsibly challenged many of the preconceived notions students had about using resources here in the United States.
One student said “I never thought that mining here in the United States could actually be good for the environment. I never realized companies in the United States try to minimize the impact mining has on the environment. While it is easy to ignore the unsafe mining practices used in other parts of the world, especially since we don’t see them in practice, it would be better for the earth as a whole for responsible mining to be done here in the United States.”
One big topic on campus was the issue of fossil fuel divestment, and CFACT was able to have a healthy discussion with many students about this issue. Many students were not aware of the huge impact fossil fuels have on today’s world. To many of them, getting rid of fossil fuels meant switching from gas powered vehicles to other alternatives. However, some students did realize the importance of fossil fuels. One student said “Fossil fuels play a huge role in our economy. Whether it is powering vehicles, creating common products we use every day, or providing energy, fossil fuels run today’s world. Renewable sources of energy, like wind and solar, aren’t ready to replace fossil fuels, and trying to replace fossil fuels with them will cause a ton of damage to the economy.”
CFACT had a great time engaging students at Washington University, and is looking forward to going back to Saint Louis to continue the debate in the future.