Students urge action on climate change with protests, die-ins

Michele Stevens
March 16, 2019

Volkov joined thousands of students in more than 100 countries who took part in coordinated "school strikes" to protest what they see as failures by their governments. "No oil! Keep the carbon in our soil!"

SPEAKER: It's our planet. "We don't want to live in that world".

Elsewhere, around 2,000 young people marched through Warsaw where one banner said: "I hate climate change even more than school".

Lexus Gill, a senior at Viewmont High, said this is the first time she has participated in an event like this.

Samiha Chatoo, 17, said she understands this change is easier said than done - but this issue is critical.

Arcata City Councilmember Sofia Pereira also spoke during the protest, highlighting some of the steps the City has been taking to combat and prepare for climate change, including banning plastic bags, prioritizing trails and adopting a community bike sharing service.

According to the MA group's Facebook page, strikers are calling for a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, teamwork from world leaders to ensure global warming remains below 1.5 degrees Celsius, and implementation of the Green New Deal, a decadelong plan proposed by lawmakers.

"This port is being built under the guise of economic opportunities when it only really helps the rich get richer, we will not fall for it", said Mishka Banuri, co-founder of Utah Youth Environmental Solutions, .

"I commend the young people who have been mobilising to raise awareness of and inspire action against Climate Change, the biggest threat facing our planet and the biggest challenge facing mankind."
"This is action. This is change", Mateer shouted to the crowd. Her classmate, Samson Osime, said politicians may not want to listen, "but they're working for us".

Milo Mateer adresses his fellow students at the Arcata Plaza.

Andie Madsen, a junior at West High School, added that "this strike is the best way to start a conversation".

A child carries a sign up the steps of the Capital during a student strike, part of a global movement to protest the current inaction by politicians on climate change, at the Capital in Salt Lake City on Friday, March 15, 2019. Unless emissions of heat-trapping gases start dropping dramatically, scientists estimate that the protesters will be in their 40s and 50s, maybe even 30s, when the world will reach risky levels of warming that global agreements are trying to prevent. Saba was also helping pass around a petition for her fellow students to sign.

The Victoria protestors also marched on the streets after stopping at the B.C. legislature. Though in much smaller numbers than Arcata's protest, the protest garnered enthusiastic support, with passing cars frequently honking in approval. "We are not young and naive".

"You guys should be proud of yourselves".

Compounding youth frustration is lawmakers who acknowledge the risk posed by climate change, but who say some ambitious plans to mitigate carbon emissions and ward off catastrophic temperature rise are too radical or unrealistic. "This is just the beginning of change".

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