School children demand change on climate strike with posters and banners in Manchester

By Sarah Smith

People gathered in front of Manchester Library for Valentines Climate strike on February 14, to support climate action.

There were around 100 or more people attending the event, mostly school children taking a Friday off school to express their thoughts and feelings on climate change and the way the government is handling it.

They are putting a lot of effort in striking, making banners and printing leaflets which they are handing out to the public, to raise awareness. One of the messages on the leaflets was: “We can tackle climate change if enough of us show the love for the things we stand to lose.”

Image: Anders Hellberg Striking for climate change has first began on the 20th of August 2018 when Greta Thunberg, a 15-year old, decided to not go to school, and instead strike for climate change. Multiple times, she said there’s no point going to school, learning about the future if the is no future. The strike has since been named: School strike for climate, Fridays for Future, Youth for Climate, Climate Strike and Youth Strike for Climate. She has been striking every day, with more people joining her daily, expressing their concerns. It has now become a world-wide thing, where school kids take Fridays off to participate in demonstrations to demand action.

The school children sang their well-known anthem, repeating: “No more coil, no more oil, keep your carbon in the soil”, and “What do we want? Climate justice. When do we want it? Now. Whose future? Our future. Whose future? Our future.”

Changes are happening rapidly, and the UK is already affected by rising temperatures. Along with the warming surface, many other changes in the climate are occurring; warming oceans, melting glaciers, rising sea levels, extreme weather etc.

The past decade, 2010 to 2019, experienced the hottest ever recorded global surface temperatures.
Scientists believe that global warming is the main contributing factor for more intense heat waves, fires, floods and many more extreme weathers.

Last year, the UK became the first major economy in the world to pass laws to end its contribution to global warming by 2050.

The UK Climate Change Act is consistent with a non-binding European Union target to cut EU-wide emissions by 80-95% by 2050.

Ewa Barker, Manchester resident who attended the strike said: “Public awareness and public action like this demonstration by school children is the key to forcing the government’s hand.”

Henrietta Leigh, teenager attending the event, from Warrington said: “It’s actually really good, because it’s getting kids out of school and raising awareness.

 

“I use reusable bags, don’t buy any single use plastic and do the recycling part which anyone can do, and really it is ridiculous to wrap a cucumber in plastic, when you can use recyclable bags to pick up veg.”

Sir David Attenborough in Blue Planet 2 showed that eight million tonnes of plastic are dumped into the sea every year.

He said: “Thirty years ago, people concerned with atmospheric pollution were voices crying in the wilderness. We aren’t voices crying in the wilderness now.”

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