Marching against climate change

Ashlynd Greenwood

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Across the world, 4 million youth marched out of classrooms and onto the streets Sept. 20 to show that politicians had failed to begin to act on climate change.

Organized by Greta Thunberg, the Global Climate Strike sprawled across 150 countries.

Thunberg is a 16-year-old Swedish environmental activist. Thunberg is passionate about raising awareness of climate change and the ways in which it affects the lives of not only her generation, but all generations to come.

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“Our house is on fire. According to the IPCC, we are less than 12 years away from not being able to undo our mistakes,” Thunberg said in an interview at the World Economic Forum. “Adults keep saying we owe it to the young people to give them hope, but I don’t want your hope. I don’t want you to be hopeful, I want you to panic. I want you to feel the fear I feel every day, and then I want you to act. I want you to act as you would in a crisis, as if your house was on fire, because it is.”

In Utah, protests were organized in Ogden and Salt Lake City, filled with an energy of change. In Ogden, DaVinci Student President Rachel Love, and her fellow students stormed out of class, ignoring the downpour of rain, to protest on 25th Street.

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Weber State University marched alongside the DaVinci Academy, local high schools and community members. Students then gathered in front of the Federal Building, chanting, “Two, four, six, eight, save the earth, it’s not too late,” and, “Its raining, it’s pouring, our politicians are snoring.”

Students see and feel the effects of climate change every day. It is often seen in the depleting snow pack. It threatens the heavy winter recreation economy in Utah and the fragile water supply. These students show they are powerful enough to make sure denial is not a policy in their government.

“I am tired of the burden being placed on our generation for a crisis we didn’t cause,” Love said. “We have taken care of this planet for thousands of years, the teaching and technology for a sustainable future already exists, this information needs to be implemented now.”

The youth-organized Global Climate Strike was one of the largest youth-led demonstrations in history and was the largest climate protest.

Thunberg gave a speech on Sept. 23, addressing world leaders about their lack of action on climate change. Thunberg cried as she said that world leaders had “stolen my dreams and my childhood. And yet, I’m one of the lucky ones. People are suffering. People are dying and dying ecosystems are collapsing. We are in the beginning of a mass extinction and all you can talk about is money and fairy tales of eternal economic growth. How dare you?”