Updated: May 11, 2020
Open Letter by Gabriel Ferrer, a Miami Senior High student
Dear Mayor Francis Suarez,
While self-confining myself during this quarantine, I have been freeing my mind to think about what we as a city could do to make it better every day and I want to help you with some ideas… But before that, I want to thank you for really hearing us, your community, by declaring a climate emergency a few months ago and agreeing to take action for our environment. Now, I really would like this “ climate emergency” to be transformed into action… For this reason, in this letter I want to introduce to you three cities in the world that could serve as a great inspiration to our beloved Miami.
The first one is Umea, a city in Sweden. This beautiful city is taking the initiative to encourage its citizens to have lower carbon emissions. They are taking advantage of the connection of the people with technology to connect with them and advise them. They are doing things like posts in social media or surveys to make the citizens be more aware, or activities like “challenges” to do. ( i.e to record yourself throwing the trash from the floor into the trash can). In my opinion, Miami is one of the most susceptible cities to make this smart approach. The percentage of people with at least one social media account in Miami is well above average. We should be thinking about making people more connected with the planet, especially in a city like ours.
The second city is Fortaleza. This beautiful Brazilian city has prioritized public transport for the citizens. They have done it with relatively low priced investments; this makes it even more appealing to us! Miami certainly doesn’t have the best transport system. It is one of the most important things to work on, it has a lot of room for improvement. I am not saying that we should just cut out the transportation with CO2 emissary cars; however, it is undeniably true that we could make it much better; the metro mover for example only moves you throughout downtown. We should make it better so the people will feel comfortable transporting in green movers to work for example…
And the last city is Seoul, South Korea. This city represents a big example of how a city should work on Solar panels. They are encouraging more and more it’s citizens with great initiatives. And, What a better place to put solar panels than Miami, the city of the sun? I think that we not only should make changes in the big picture like the great change of FPL that we are asking for. In Miami, there’s a huge quantity of CO2 emissions because this is a highly transited city. But, if we at least use solar panels in our houses and businesses it would be really great for our environment. Hence, I recommend that we could make people´s way of getting solar panels much easier.
As far as I can tell, we have done nothing with this attractive claim of a “climate emergency”. I know that this extraordinary situation of the pandemic has represented a great unexpected change. But there are other things to work on, apart from the pandemic; while we can´t work as much as you would like on the environment, we could take advantage of this quarantine by encouraging your team to connect more with the Miamian people in the social media.
Sincerely and hoping to get a response,
Gabriel Ferrer; A Miami Senior High School student