I/V w/ Sophie Handford for School Strike 4 Climate NZ: March 13, 2019
I/V w/ Sophie Handford for School Strike 4 Climate NZ: March 13, 2019I/V w/ Sophie Handford for School Strike 4 Climate NZ: March 13, 2019
The School Strike 4 Climate Action NZ is happening this Friday in Aotea Square, and throughout the rest of the country. This day has been organised by students and helpers for school children to strike from school to show politicians they are taking their futures seriously, and treating climate change for what it is - a crisis. These kids are between 8-18 and their demands include:
- Passing an ambitious and effective Zero Carbon Act that gives New Zealand a coherent long term plan to get to carbon neutrality by 2050;
- Keeping the effect of global warming and its consequences for all living things on this planet in mind when making decisions for the future;
- The paths to reaching our emission targets being fast tracked, well planned and transparent so the New Zealand public is aware that progress is being made and can hold the Government to account;
- Ceasing all exploration and extraction of more fossil fuels immediately. We already have more in our reserves than we can afford to burn to avoid catastrophic climate change. We need to invest in renewable energy alternatives now;
- Regulating emissions from agriculture, which account for almost half of our emissions, and for which there is currently no plan.
Sophie Handford is one of the young people organising the strike and Lillian Hanly spoke with her to find out more about how these strikes came about given the current Fridays for Future movement in Sweden that was started by Greta Thunberg (and the same in Belgium, just on Thursdays). Thunberg decided she would strike every Friday until the Swedish policies provided a safe pathway well under 2-degrees Celcius, in line with the Paris Agreement. The point behind it is that students are asking what the point is of studying for a future that may not even exist at this point, and why spend a lot of effort to become educated, when our governments are not listening to the educated?
But back to Aotearoa. Sophie was catching a train at the time and during the interview hopped off the train and onto a bus which you’ll hear, Lillian decided to leave this in as a testament to the actioning of alternatives to carbon use.
Photo credit: Forest and Bird