More than 600 young Canadians have signed an online pledge, titled No Future, No Children, promising that they will not have any children until the Canadian government takes stronger action in the battle against climate change. The online petition, which was started by an 18-year-old student, states, “I pledge not to have children until I believe the government has done enough to ensure a safe future."
Emma Lim officially started her "#No Future, No Children" campaign earlier this week, after deciding that provincial and federal lawmakers were taking “nowhere near the action needed” to combat climate change. Speaking via her online campaign, Lim explained, "It's clear that our leaders aren't taking this seriously,” she said, using the federal government's approval of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion as an example, adding, “This is a serious issue.”
While the 18-year-old says she has always wanted to have children, the climate crisis in Canada has turned her away from this dream. Describing it as ‘heart-breaking,’ Lim writes, “Even though I want to have children more than almost anything- what kind of a mother would I be if I brought a baby into a world where I couldn’t make sure they were safe?”
It seems that Lim is not the only one willing to put their dreams on hold for the sake of the environment, as by Wednesday afternoon, there were more than 617 pledges on her official website, promising not to have children until the Canadian government takes stronger action.
Lim, who grew up in London, Ontario, said that although she has a list of potential baby names on her computer, she is not prepared to bring children into the world if she cannot “keep them safe.”
She explains, “In my province once-in-a-century floods have started to happen every year. There are heatwaves in the summer, and in the winter we’re not able to skate on the pond anymore.” Lim goes on, “But the truth is that we are in so much more danger than I could have imagined.”
Speaking to CBC News, Lim pointed to the fact that Canada is not currently on track to meet their Paris Climate Agreement goals, as an example that the government is not taking the matter seriously enough.
She said, “I am not the only young person giving up lifelong dreams because they are unsure of what the future will hold. We’ve read the science, and now we’re pleading with our government.”
Lim is clearly not the only young Canadian that is having serious concerns about the government’s response to climate change in Canada. On Friday, thousands of Canadians are expected to march Canada-wide for the protection of the environment, calling on the country’s leaders’ to do more.
The school strikes will run in partnership with the #FridaysForFuture campaign led by teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg, who will be participating in the strikes in Montreal on the 27th of September.
Lim explained that giving up her dream has not been easy, and she worries that, despite her best efforts, nothing will change. That said, she aims to look to the future with hope, instead of fear.
You can read Lim’s full story and sign her pledge by clicking here.