The big, yellow, school bus has always been a staple of our childhood. Memories of kids scurrying to finish homework, mid-schoolers gossiping loudly about their weekends, and the constant chaos that was every bus ride reminds us of how much time we spent on the familiar vehicle.
For some, the bus ride is a place to socialize and reminisce over the day and they excitedly anticipate its arrival, but for others, it brings nothing but freezing cold temperatures. Arth Trlivedi, a grade 10 student at Westmount, described his experience on his school bus as riding in a “cold, metal box.” He recited his account of his bus rides, describing in detail the jagged metal in the seat, the lacking suspensions, as well as the heating issue. “Any tiny little bump is a major rollercoaster.”
Arth’s bus in particular has many issues surrounding the heating system, which is essential come the frigid temperatures of November and December. A look inside shows the windows that are unable to close, resulting in heat lose. This not only impacts the students as they prepare for a long day of learning, but also the extensive use of energy.
The United Nations recently introduced Bridging the Emissions Gap, which aims to significantly decrease harmful emissions and reaffirms the presence of major climate change. “Time is short, so we need to optimize the tools at hand,” states Christina Figueres, Executive Secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCC), describing the need for stricter regulations and pledges.
The implementation of these goals around the world is a difficult task when even developed nations are unable to provide proper infrastructure. The need for more infrastructures is rising, but proper infrastructure still seems to be a fool’s dream. This inconvenience has significant long-term consequences, as well as associated costs, some of which cannot be measured by money.
The government’s inability to meet global initiatives taken to insure the longevity and prosperous nature of our earth and its resources is an impending issue that must be addressed on both a large scale and a locally as a community. Critiquing the lack of proper infrastructure introduces us to many of issues we face every day, starting from the school bus.
These ecological impacts must be addressed through small changes around our community. The small steps we take as citizens of a globalized society can influence the way we use our limited resources, and work towards promoting technologies that can help counter the climate changes we are facing.