By Ava Lewis August 9, 2018

Last May I became an intern with Defend Our Future. As an ecology student, I felt it was important to understand, protect, and advocate for environmental policies that safeguard the natural world I study.

Last month, I had the opportunity to fly into D.C. to discuss the impacts of climate change and environmental policy with Ohio Representatives Steve Stivers and Joyce Beatty, and Senator Rob Portman. We asked these officials to take leadership on climate and position Ohio to become a leader on clean energy.

Before my internship, I hadn’t fully grasped the impact that the government has on the environment. Rolling back clean car standards, pushing against clean energy, ignoring methane in our air, and denying science all contribute to destroying our earth. I encourage everybody to engage with their elected officials on environmental policy.

After this visit, and the positive responses I received from Senator Rob Portman and Representative Joyce Beatty, I am hopeful that Ohio will be better at addressing environmental issues in the future.

Ava Lewis is a Defend Our Future Intern at the Ohio State University.