This week, Bill Nye dishes out some warm and fuzzy feelings (served on a bed of seriousness) through a kind and inspiring response to Victoria, a middle school student from Washington state who is looking for some clues about how to counteract climate change, and make an individual stride towards a better world.
As an immediate and urgent action, Nye encourages Victoria to talk to her parents and express what her concerns and passions are, and ask them to vote in state and federal elections – especially right now, more than ever – for the candidate with correct view on the reality of climate change and a science-literate plan to address the crisis.
In the longer term, Nye says it’s all about Victoria getting the most from her education and really applying herself to her classes, particularly science and algebra, which he says will train her brain into ways of thinking that are crucial to problem-solving should she choose to have a career in science – or even better engineering, taking after Nye himself – where she would be in a position to implement research and positive environmental change.
There is a role model living in Victoria’s state and he just so happens to be the governor, Jay Inslee. Inslee co-authored a book with Bracken Hendricks called Apollo’s Fire, about the future of energy production, and how the world can develop inventive alternatives to fossil fuels. Inslee and Hendricks look at the dreamers who are experimenting with mirrors and liquid metal to squeeze electricity from sunshine, those geniuses who are using waves off the U.S. coast to power appliances, and the entrepreneurs who are leading the charge on batteries that can sustainably run vehicles and one day homes and businesses. It’s an inspirational read for any curious mind and, in the authors' own words, it gives an optimistic view “of a renewed environment; millions of good jobs; and stronger, more secure communities can be the spark that unites a truly common movement."For those of us out of school, Nye’s message still applies – vote responsibly, educate yourself continuously, take the smallest measures from reducing consumption to recycling correctly, and contribute to big, world-changing ideas in any way you can, whether it’s something you can do directly here and now, or a way you can inspire the next generation to be thoughtful, sharp-minded innovators of the future.