Climate strikes set to reach UK schools

On Friday, the first UK wide climate school strike is set to occur in more than 30 cities and towns across the country.

Pupils will be protesting, due to their concerns over climate change and the lack of inaction they believe governments are taking over it.

The protest is inspired by Greta Thunberg, a Swedish student who in August started a solo strike outside parliament in Sweden. Thunberg believes that “one person can make a difference” and said, “I don’t care if I get into trouble at school”. She has recently spoken in Poland at UN climate talks and undertaken a TEDx talk.

Thunberg’s actions inspired pupils around the world to join her. Around 15,000 students, in Australia, took to the streets in November 2018 and just last month 3,000 pupils walked out of school in Brussels. With other strikes being conducted across Europe, North America and even in Japan.

There have been some individual protests across the UK, but Friday’s protest will be the first coordinated nationwide event.

Holly Gillibrand is one of those individuals, who for the last five Fridays has stood outside her high school in the Highlands striking for the climate. She witnessed Greta’s actions on social media and felt “she was brave and inspirational”. Gillibrand said she felt “very angry, very scared”, describing climate change as “an urgent crisis that needs to be addressed”.

Jake Woodier is helping to coordinate the strikes, from the UK Youth Climate Coalition, said “Young people see what is happening- especially since the IPCC report last year, which spelled out that we only have 12 years left to avoid catastrophic climate change… they realise that politicians are nowhere near where they need to be on this and want to do something to change that”.

These strikes across the UK, are a build up towards a global day of school strikes on 15th March.

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