The World Climate Strike

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The World Climate Strike

Gabrielle Ott, Editor

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On September 20th, the entire world staged a global climate strike. The estimated 4 million protesters from over 163 countries were protesting climate change, also known as global warming. Many of these protesters were students that decided to skip school to instead fight for their future. In cities such as Melbourne, there were more than 100,000 protesters in the streets, which organizers say is the most in Australia’s history for a climate strike. In Warsaw, the capital of Poland, protesters joined to fight their government of their coal-reliant country. Berlin had similar numbers to Melbourne, with around 100,000 protesters, according to the Berlin Police.

Theo Parkinson- Pride, a twelve year old from London said to the New York Times,”I told my mum, I feel this is more important than school today because soon there may be no school to go to.” This was true for lots of the protesters all over the world bringing signs that read, “There is no planet B,” or, “Think now or swim later.” This  was a common view that most student protesters had. Jemima Grimmer, a 13 year old from Sydney said, “Adults are like,’Respect your elders.’ And we’re like, ‘Respect our futures.'”

These protests were largely driven by Greta Thunberg, a young Swedish activist who, along with a group of activists called the Climate Kids, are suing the federal government. She has spoken at the National Assembly in Paris, given a TED talk, and given a speech at the United Nations. In New York City, she told the told the thousands that gathered,”We are a wave of change. Together, we are a wave of change,” in her speech in Manhattan.

Here in Seattle, thousands marched through the streets of downtown Seattle. At the headquarters of Amazon, hundreds of Amazon employees walked out to join the protesters to pressure their company’s leaders into going carbon-neutral. It worked, and Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, committed to being carbon-neutral by 2040 and ordering 100,000 electric delivery trucks. Carbon-neutral means that Amazon will not completely cut carbon emissions, but will make up for the carbon they release by planting trees and other means of reducing the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. This will still be beneficial to the cause, with less carbon dioxide in the air.

All of these protesters hope that soon our world can take action against climate change and secure a future for generations to come. With all of the protests to come on the scheduled Fridays For Future’s, these young people will continue to fight for action, and will until we get the change our world needs.

Sources:

Bush, Evan. “’The Youth Are Watching’: Global Climate Strike Draws Students, Adult Allies to Friday Demonstrations in Seattle.” The Seattle Times, The Seattle Times Company, 20 Sept. 2019, https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/environment/the-youth-are-watching-global-climate-strike-to-draw-students-adult-allies-to-friday-demonstrations/.

Nytimes.com. (2019). Protesting Climate Change, Young People Take to Streets in a Global Strike. [online] Available at: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/20/climate/global-climate-strike.html [Accessed 4 Oct. 2019].

 Vox. (2019). How big was the global climate strike? 4 million people, activists estimate.. [online] Available at: https://www.vox.com/energy-and-environment/2019/9/20/20876143/climate-strike-2019-september-20-crowd-estimate [Accessed 4 Oct. 2019].

the Guardian. (2019). ‘We will make them hear us’: Greta Thunberg’s speech to New York climate strike – video. [online] Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/video/2019/sep/21/we-will-make-them-hear-us-greta-thunbergs-speech-to-new-york-climate-strike-video [Accessed 4 Oct. 2019].

Picture Credit: Steve Ringman, the Seattle Times