The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

Taylor Swift column: Returning the scarf (Matilda’s Version)

Olivia Moon

Big Reputation:

  • On Tuesday, September 12, Swift won nine more VMAs, bringing her total to 23. This made her one of the artists with the most VMAs, second only to Beyoncé. 
  • Watch out for Taylor Swift: The Eras Tour coming to theaters worldwide Friday, October 13.
  • The long awaited 1989 Taylors Version is coming out Friday, October 27 in addition to five new vault songs that were created at the time but never released… until now.
  • Swift and Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce have sparked dating rumors after Swift appeared at two of his games, one is his private box with his mother!  

It’s me hi, my carbon emissions are the problem, it’s me

Taylor Swift’s dirty little secret is not so secret anymore. As much as us Swifties like to idolize her, Swift, like most humans, has many flaws. One in particular has come into the light in recent years.

A report by the Yard, a United Kingdom-based marketing agency, published a report last year with a list of celebrities and their jet carbon emissions. To everyone’s surprise, Swift was found on the top of this list with a whopping 8,284 tons of carbon dioxide emitted. 

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Just to put into perspective how big this number is, the average American citizen produces only 16 tons. This means Swift is producing over 500 times more carbon dioxide than you or me.

The Yard stated the data was collected using publicly available flight data and the estimated number of carbon dioxide produced per hour for a plane traveling at 850 kilometers per hour. It is important to note that these numbers are not an exact representation of each celebrity’s carbon footprint as it is impossible to measure their specific impact on the environment. 

The other question that comes into play is whether each trip was justified, or if there were less harmful modes of transportation available at the time. It’s understandable that Swift wouldn’t want to use commercial airlines in concern for safety issues, but it still leaves many wondering what exactly is forcing her to be using a jet that frequently. 

So, how did people respond? When the report came out, people were enraged, but that seemed to vanish quickly. At first fans called out Swift online demanding an explanation but were met with silence. Eventually everyone seemed to forget or at least stop caring about it. 

This response fits a pattern of adoring fans forgiving celebrities for their toxic consumption lifestyles. For example, on Wednesday, July 12 of this year, reality T.V. star and businesswoman Kylie Jenner flaunted a 17 minute jet ride next to her boyfriend at the time, Travis Scott, using the caption “You wanna take mine or yours.” The instance garnered her negative media attention, however the post still received millions of likes on instagram. 

However, the glamorous celebrity lifestyles that are widely accepted go beyond just private jet use. Flamboyant mansions with vainglorious fountains, many sports cars and expensive annual trips to Cabo filled with yacht days and just some of the ways celebrities chose to use their money and power. In the back of our minds we all know just how much energy is wasted on these luxuries, yet we still condone them. By saying nothing, we are expressing that we don’t care about the climate crisis. 

As a start, we can enforce restrictions on jet carbon emissions, but the issue goes deeper. We need to learn not to idolize celebrities to the point where we can excuse such obvious offenses.     

What do we do with Swift? As much as I love her— quite a lot as I am writing this column about her— no one can excuse her outrageous carbon footprint. We need to continue to call for an explanation and immediate change, otherwise we are the anti-heros.  

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Matilda Haney Foulds, Staff Writer

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