Hundreds of school children gathered outside the Australian prime minister’s official residence in Sydney on Friday, beginning a “global climate strike” to demand action on global warming.
School children holding signs ‘Don’t be a Coal Beast’ and ‘Scotty Coal Forever’ protest Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s support for coal mining, which helps fuel massive greenhouse gas emissions.
The prime minister promised to support coal mines until they were economically viable, arguing that coal was needed to provide cheap electricity.
“We are angry with the Morrison government. We are witnessing a (succession) of climate disasters with wildfires and floods”, launched 17-year-old Natasha Abhayavikrama, the organizer of the demonstration.
Australia has been severely affected by climate change in recent years: drought, frequent and intense flooding accompanied by massive deadly wildfires in the Australian summer of 2019-2020.
“We know it is fossil fuels that exacerbate these disasters (…),” the young woman warned as her fathers would vote for climate action in the next federal election, which will take place in May.
Another protester, Ella O’Dwyer-Oshalak, 13, said she was affected by the floods on the country’s east coast.
“I was really angry that I lost almost everything and couldn’t do anything,” she said. “I fear for the future and things like this could happen again.”
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