” Vote for the Planet ” is protest message
April 11, 2019
Thousands of students discouraged at the lack of momentum in the Government’s climate change programme marched in Wellington on Friday.
Strike 4 climate change finished in Parliament grounds where students were chanting, “Climate – justice – now.”
Despite public debate about whether they should be out of school, they were joined by grandparents, parents and extended family.
Sophia Twaddle was frustrated at the slowness of decision makers in recognising and acting on key environmental topics. “Our generation has been learning about climate change since primary school, a lot of our education is about this.”
Irritation at the pace of change was echoed by speakers on the steps of parliament where they were joined by Environmental Minister James Shaw, Finance Minister Grant Robertson and National List MP Nicola Willis.
The students presented three major demands to the Ministers; reaching carbon neutrality by 2050 or sooner, limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius and passing an ambitious and effective Zero Carbon Act that creates a long-term plan to significantly reduce emissions.
Sporting a black eye from an assault the previous day, Shaw said the Government was committed to a Zero Carbon Act in 2019. “Because if we do not, we do not have a future.”
Olivia Morphew from Wellington Girls echoed the concerns of the students. “We are important and deserve to be treated as such – parents and the community have the responsibility to keep their children safe.”