Posted in Activism, Community, Discussion

The Intersectionality of Climate Change

Let’s face it, the fact of the matter is that marginalized and POC communities are the ones suffering the most from climate change. The damage in Puerto Rico wasn’t a random tragedy. These hurricanes are no coincidence, they are a direct result of climate change.

On Friday, September 20th I joined thousands, check that, millions of people around the world in marching for the Climate Strike. Global warming is a real issue that we shouldn’t waste time arguing on. This is the time for action.

I’m so happy to see the passion that young people have, it is our planet after all. The strike I went to was organized by high school students who want to see things changed, a few of which are from my own alma mater.

While the strike organizers were speaking, one of the girls said something that really struck me. She talked about how climate change affects marginalized groups disproportionately worse and that’s something I can attest to.

There’s a reason that black and POC communities have higher rates of asthma. There’s a reason that developing nations have to choose between filthy water with literally toxins in it, or clean water sold in plastic that ends up littering the roads. There is a reason that when I visited Haiti, the capital had little to no trees and mini mountains of trash lining the roads.

Corporations are notorious for targeting those who are already knocked down and keeping them there. Not only are these corporations big bullies, so are the people behind them. The people behind the oil and gas companies have known about climate change since the 1970s. That’s over forty years of exponential pollution!

I’m currently taking a Literature and Environment class that’s helping further my knowledge on the topic. I think this will be something I expand upon more in the future. I want to research the topic more, but it’s can be difficult finding environment literature that takes colonialism and marginalized populations into account.

Did you learn something new?

How do you feel about this?

What would you suggest I read next? (Link articles below!)

Let me know in the comments below, let’s chat!


Rachelle Saint Louis is a Haitian-American writer, born and raised in South Florida. She received a 2018 Silver Medal in the Scholastic Art and Writing Competition for her poem “Red Blood Cell.” She is currently a Psychology and English double major at Florida Atlantic University. Her poetry has been published in Rigorous Magazine. Rachelle has been writing poetry since the 7th grade and you can often find her performing Spoken Word at local open mics.

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