Student power rises up across the country

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From breast feeding babies up children, teens and their supporters came together across the region as part of the school strike 4 climate action this morning. Over 700 people gathered in Lismore’s Quad and over 1,000 in Byron’s Railway Park with the majority of the gatherings made up of students who were being supported by parents and other responsible adults.

Talking about why she was at the climate change strike ten year old Elsa, who was at the Lismore rally, said, ‘If we don’t do anything about it there won’t be a world. We won’t be able to adapt to climate change quick enough. So nothing else will really matter – so we need to focus on this while we can.’

Defiance

Students representing all the local high schools and primary schools were at the rallies defying the NSW education departments statement about the climate strike rally that ‘Any student not in classes on a school day will be marked absent and unexplained absences may be subject to the school’s disciplinary code.’

Ella Whan and Mia Thom who were key to organising the Byron Shire rally led the thousand strong crowd from Railway Park to the Byron Bay Surf Club with the chant ‘What do we want? Climate change action. When do we want it? Now’.

‘This is our future,’ said Mia and and Ella addressing the crowd gathered at the Byron Surf Club.

‘The world is already dying and politicians continue to deny climate change is even real. We have the resources and the technology’ to take action on climate change but ‘we are not abundant in time,’ they pointed out to the cheers of fellow students.

‘It is time to re-define our governments priorities. We can’t stand by and watch our one chance at a future being destroyed.

‘What do we want future generations to remember us by? What do we want out legacy to consist of?’ they asked the crowd.

‘But most importantly – do we want a future at all?’

Murwillumbah

Around 200 students and their supporters gathered this afternoon at Knox Park in Murwillumbah to join their voices with those across the region, the country and the world.

They marched through the main streets of the town chanting ‘keep the coal in the ground’ and ‘stop denying the earth is dying’.

‘It was a really good turn out for a town like Murwillumbah,’ said one of the supporters Greg Reeves who also admired their loud and strong messages.

National and international action

It has been predicted that there will be students from over 60 cities and towns around Australia that will be striking in support of action on climate change today as well as students from over 100 countries from around the world.

The two 14 year old students Milou Albrecht and Harriet O’Shea Carre who kicked off the school strike movement in Australia with fellow students in Central Victoria, said, ‘A Federal election is around the corner, but our politicians are not listening to the Australian people. Extreme weather is all around us and we need our politicians to be climate leaders.

‘We may still be in school but we know the mining and burning of coal, oil and gas is driving dangerous climate impacts, including droughts, bushfires, and heatwaves. We only have a decade to act in order to prevent the worst impacts of climate change yet our politicians are wasting time and putting our future in danger,’ said Milou.

Source: Echonet

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