By David Kavanagh | posted on September 12, 2019
ALBANY students will join millions of their peers around the world next Friday calling on their leaders to take action on the encroaching threat of climate change.
The September 20 Climate Strike is set to unfold alongside at least 80 other similar protests around Australia and hundreds internationally, three days before the UN Emergency Climate Summit.
North Albany Senior High School student Noah Morcombe told the Weekender students from Albany Senior High School, St Joseph’s College, Great Southern Grammar and his own school would be joined by other segments of the community.
He said they were demanding action from all levels of government and would present a petition to the City of Albany following a hour-long march from Anzac Peace Park to the Town Square.
“In the local government we want to see a declaration of a climate emergency which has been declared by multiple cities around the country already,” the 16-year-old said.
“And on a Federal level, we want them to be moving away from fossil fuels and have a 100 per cent carbon neutral country by 2030.
“The solutions exist but the policies that could be put in place to combat climate change aren’t being put in place.”
ASHS student Rebecca Ford said change would instead have to start with individuals.
“I think change on a large scale has got to start with one person making a decision first and influencing others,” she said.
“There’s less and less time until the effects of climate change are permanent and you can’t go back from there really, so we have to act now.”
Ms Ford noted that while her teachers seemed to support the cause, school administrations were being discouraged from endorsing the strike.
“The Department of Education has a very strong stance against it so teachers and principals can’t really support it,” Mr Morcombe said.
“The classic argument against it is that they think we just want to wag a day off school, but if we did want to do that we’d just pretend to be sick.
“We’re not going to put in months and months of effort and planning this just to get a day off school.”
“It’s one day for our entire future,” Ms Ford added.
A similar protest in Denmark in March saw dozens of students from Denmark Senior High School and elsewhere in the region march on Denmark Shire offices.
That was inspired in part by a nationwide November demonstration and the actions of Swedish student Greta Thunberg who in August last year protested outside her country’s Parliament.
Albany’s Climate Strike will kick off at 12pm.