Would letting children vote give climate change the attention in elections it deserves?

A Vancouver-based campaign has a novel idea to save the planet: lower the voting age.

Called the “18to8” campaign, it’s an initiative of the David Suzuki Foundation.

“We are a group of Canadian kids who want to tackle climate change in the voting booth,” its website reads. “We are the future of this planet and we’re not going to just sit back and watch as it gets destroyed. While grown-ups are worried about grown-up things like gas prices and political popularity contests, we’re passionate about protecting the natural world—our home—and we’re willing to prioritize a livable climate over all other issues. In the federal election this October 21st, for the love of the planet, let us vote.”

The 18to8 campaign emphasizes that time is running out.

“The world’s leading climate scientists have told us we have less than 12 years to get global average temperatures under control,” the website continues. “By the time we’re old enough to vote, it will be too late. Game over! We will be the ones most affected by climate change, and yet we don’t have a say… how is that fair!? By lowering the voting age from 18 to 8, we can make sure climate change is the number one priority in this election, and all elections to come.”

David Suzuki Foundation CEO Stephen Cornish is quoted in the release saying that the campaign is not about giving children the right to vote, but rather about getting adults to vote based on how climate change will affect children and future generations to come.

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