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Eureka High Kids Will Be On Strike for the Climate Today, Too

16 March 2019

The rallies will continue around the world, with students in more than 100 countries and in 2,000 locations set to skip class to make their voices heard.

Porrill spoke at the megaphone about her first time scuba diving, and the majesty of the coral reefs, which are being threatened by a changing climate and ocean acidification.

"I was diagnosed Asperger's Syndrome, OCD and selective muteism", she said in a recent TED Talk.

A group of year 12 students from Nelson College for Girls said their parents and their principal supported their choice to "strike" from school.

Strikers marching through Canterbury city centre
Strikers marching through Canterbury city centre

In London, thousands marched with banners like "The future is in our hands" and "We're missing lessons to teach you one".

A United Nations report released this week blames climate change, population growth, pesticides, plastics pollution and water contaminated with hormone-changing chemicals for killing millions of people every year.

Young people like Thunberg and the Beijer sisters are coming out in the thousands around the world demanding climate change action after a damning environmental report spurred them to action.

The coordinated "school strikes" were inspired by 16-year-old Swedish activist Greta Thunberg, who began holding solitary demonstrations outside the Swedish parliament last year.

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While led by young people themselves, there are plenty of parents, teachers and others supporting their action and involvement. Our current politicians aren't listening, so we want to recruit candidates across the country to run for us and the climate.

It's a sentiment shared by Tomke Kuhlmann, an exchange student from Hamburg, Germany, who is attending Moncton High. "Climate change is going to kill people".

Before they can train for a future, they say, they have to secure it. But even after the elections were over, her protests continued. "Why go to school if we're going to be too busy running from the next hurricane or fire?"

Some politicians have criticized the students, suggesting they should be spending their time in school, not on the streets. But then the U.N.'s IPCC report came out past year [and] it pushed me even further to take action.

Volker Quaschning, a professor of engineering at Berlin's University of Applied Sciences, said it was easy for politicians to belittle students. "If we do nothing then parts of this planet could become uninhabitable by the end of the century". The Hilltop High students also made a stop at Chula Vista City Hall to call on city officials to back the proposal.

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Forman: Although climate change is a huge threat, I'm optimistic because of the success we've seen with big movements like this in the past.

"Do we really want to live a life in houses with masks and everything?"

"I have always felt like I needed to do something", said Anna Siegel, a 7th grader at Friends School of Portland who helped organize the Portland rally.

The hundreds of sign-carrying students gathered at the Capitol brought a long list of policy demands.

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He's an NBCC student from the Miramichi, but he drove to the New Brunswick Legislature to have his say. "This is something that's very important to me and I want to raise awareness about it".

Eureka High Kids Will Be On Strike for the Climate Today, Too