Conserve School students from in and around Madison, Wisconsin are using their voices to make change in their own community. On March 19th, several Conserve alumni and future students presented their Green New Deal Resolution to the Madison City Council. Their Green New Deal resolution calls on city officials to make Madison “green” by 2030 by transitioning to renewable energy sources, focusing on lake quality, and encouraging residents to make renewable choices. Madison’s adoption of this resolution with a unanimous vote made Madison the largest city and only capital city to pass this revolution so far.
Their campaign was inspired by national Green New Deal legislation introduced by Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Senator Ed Markey earlier this month in Washington D.C. Before going to the city council, campaign leaders Ella Kuntsman (CS17), Isabella Spitznagle (CS17), and Katia Wanish (CS16) worked with other youth to educate the community about the importance of sustainable legislation. They collected 1190 petition signatures and numerous handwritten letters of support from Madison community members.
At the city council meeting, youth gave testimony about why the green new deal mattered to them. Learning how to testify about the importance of wilderness in the English/History combined class gave me the confidence to stand up for environmental issues in my sending community. While they got the resolution passed, the alumni still have bigger plans to move to state level in the upcoming months.
Photos submitted by Katia Wanish