How to prepare the United States, and the world, from the impacts of climate change has become a flashpoint in the 2020 presidential election. Several candidates running for the Democratic nomination for president have endorsed The Green New Deal, a resolution that calls for a dramatic shift in U.S. energy consumption and infrastructure within the next decade to protect the climate. Others have pledged to spend more than a trillion dollars to combat the issue.

The shift in the national dialogue towards climate change has often been attributed to a surge in climate activism, largely led by the Sunrise Movement. The Sunrise Movement is a national organization of youth activists advocating for bold leadership on climate change. Saya Ameli Hajebi, an organizer with the group, said during an interview with Boston Public Radio on Monday that one goal of the Sunrise Movement is to raise awareness for the immediate danger climate change poses to communities around the world.

“How many families, how many kids, are looking out to their home and seeing it burned to ash? How many kids are watching the last bits of brick and drywall from their school drift away because of more and more hurricanes?” Hajebi said. “This is an issue about protecting our families, and once we realize that, once we internalize just how urgent this crisis is and how it could really take our loved ones away from us, there’s no other path but to action.”

Joining Hajebi on Monday was Kelsey Wirth, the co-founder and chair of the board of Mothers Out Front. Similar to the Sunrise Movement, Mothers Out Front focuses their climate activism around the experience of being a mother during the climate crisis. Ultimately, Wirth said the goal of the group is to mobilize citizens to rival the power and influence major corporations have on elected officials.

“I think we share with [the Sunrise Movement] that it’s not a knowledge problem, it’s a power problem,” Wirth said. “There’s too much power in the hands of the fossil fuel industry and the politicians that do their bidding and we have to build people power on the other side.”