Students strike again for climate justice

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COVID-safe school strike: Castlemaine students climbed the steps of the city’s market building on Friday as part of a global day of school strike urging governments to take swift action to counter the looming threat of uncontrollable climate change. Photo: Eve Agneau

The students of Castlemaine once again went on “strike” joining countless thousands of young people across the country demanding real policy change to quickly control the looming threat of uncontrollable climate change.

On Friday, students from local primary and secondary schools climbed the steps of the central building of Castlemaine Market to hold signs, be seen and their concerns known to the public – again.

“Subsidizing the fossil fuel industry is subsidizing the destruction of our future,” a local student told the Express during the Friday action.

Callum Neilson Bridgfoot, a student at Castlemaine Secondary College, said Friday’s COVID security action particularly called for an end to Australia’s current support for the fossil fuel sector to the tune of billions of dollars in taxpayer subsidies each. year.

“Right now we have a huge opportunity to invest in clean energy and bring justice to those heavily affected by climate change,” Callum said.

“Clean energy solutions will create thousands of jobs and help us fight climate change.

“Instead, our federal government is talking about using taxpayer dollars to fund the dirty and polluting gas industry and doing nothing for communities affected by climate change.

“Gas is a fossil fuel that drives climate change and harms people and our climate. By supporting the gas industry, the government is putting my future at risk.

Castlemaine student Niamh O’Connor Smith said the timing was especially critical for the climate justice movement.

“We are heading towards a federal election,” she said, also calling the upcoming climate talks at the United Nations COP 26 in Glasgow as a last chance for world leaders to help the planet change course. course before the future of young people is burnt out.

“I wish our government didn’t have new oil, coal or gas mines, including Adani, commit to achieving net zero by 2030 and fund a just transition for all fuel workers fossils, “said Arlo, a student at Castlemaine Elementary School, attending Friday’s lecture. local schools strike as similar actions took place simultaneously across the country.

“I am very worried about my future because for the moment, the government is doing nothing. “

Luka, 20, a student of Castlemaine TAFE, said he has been participating in School Strikes For Climate since the first in 2018, in Melbourne.

“I want the government to make real changes to ensure environmental and climate security,” Luka said.

Calls from the students in particular include demands to end spending public funds on gas and other fossil fuel projects, and instead provide strong support for projects to transition the country’s economy towards 100. % of renewable energies by 2030.

They also called for First Nations solutions to protect the country, with First Nations communities also participating in particular in Friday’s national school strike.

In Castlemaine, the students’ deep-seated fears were also reiterated on Sunday when local church leaders and worshipers, including the Uniting, Anglican and Catholic denominations, actively took to the streets to demonstrate as part of a Global multi-faith movement for climate justice – their bells have been ringing.


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