Young members of the community continued to lobby the Pleasanton City Council to take stands on environmental issues.
At the Feb. 19 meeting, a second contingent of 4th graders from Walnut Grove Elementary School asked the council to ban single use plastics.
On another issue, three students from Foothill High School called on the council to pass a resolution in favor of passage of the Green New Deal.
They noted that local governments calling for the federal government to pass a Green New Deal would demonstrate widespread popular support for necessary and just climate action.
The resolution concludes: "Therefore be it resolved that the Pleasanton City Council calls on the U.S. Government to pass a Green New Deal based on the Resolution released on February 7, 2019 by Senator Ed Markey and Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez."
Student representative Subha Khan told the council, "We can no longer deny the real threat of climate change." She said that the Green New Deal is far from perfect and requires many concessions. “It is the only proposal that addresses climate change with the real urgency it requires."
Student Caroline Gersich continued, "Passing the resolution represents purely a symbolic commitment to drastic and rapid climate action. Traditional solutions are not enough."
The final Foothill student who spoke, Aoise Kennedy, said that there was widespread support for the Green Deal. It has been endorsed by the Sierra Club.
The resolution presented by the students to the council notes that the world is already experiencing serious, costly, and increasing impacts from climate change, including more intense storms, unprecedented flooding and persistent wildfires. An inadequate response to climate change will increase economic and environmental disruptions that threaten human life, healthy communities, and critical infrastructure.
Among other things, the Green New Deal legislation would create a detailed mobilization plan that within a decade would achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions through a fair and just transition for all communities and workers; create green jobs and ensure prosperity and economic security for all people of the United States; secure for all people of the United States for generations to come clean air and water; climate and community resiliency; healthy food; access to nature; and a sustainable environment.
Twenty-two fourth graders expanded on remarks made at the Feb. 7 council meeting. They reminded the council of the growing island of trash in the ocean impacting sea life. Plastic bags look like jellyfish and are eaten by turtles. They pointed out that fish eat the microscopic plastic pieces and get sick. We eat the fish and are impacted.
They wanted the council to ban single use plastics such as lids, straws and utensils, unless they were absolutely necessary.
Gary and Nancy Harrington, who have donated a wide variety of artworks to the city, asked the council to establish a Cultural Appreciation Park. It would celebrate and embrace the growing diversity in the city, said Gary.
Envisioned is a well-landscaped park with serene winding paths lined with sculptures that various cultural groups have helped to make happen by participating in the process.
Gary suggested that the park be placed next to the library proposed for construction on the Bernal property.