Why I went on strike for climate action

 

Sir, – Last Friday, a thousand students took part in a school strike in Ennis, Co Clare. We stood together to show that we were there for climate action. We were there to make the Government see that we care. As children and teenagers, we cannot vote. So we were doing one of the only things we can do to get the Government see our opinion and hear our voice – we skipped school.

The Government won’t be here in 50 years to clean up this mess it is creating and ignoring. If it does not start to change now, we may never be able to clean it up.

There is no planet B.

Greta Thunberg started striking on Fridays in August 2018. Then, she was only one person with a cardboard sign. Only seven months later, tens of thousands of children and teenagers are striking for climate justice. When the time is right, it only takes one person to change the world.

When you’re young, you have big dreams. Dreams of becoming an astronaut or an explorer. Dreams of being the first person on Mars or the best dancer in the world.

Right now, I have a dream for my future, but that dream sliding rapidly away from me, because our future is uncertain, due to the lack of response to climate change. From what would have been certain a hundred years ago has now turned to a hope. For example, instead of saying “I will see the year 2070”, we are increasingly having to say, “I hope to see the year 2070.”

Hoping for a future is not good enough. And you are the ones taking that future away from us without thinking twice about it. In the words of Greta Thunberg, “You say you love your children above all else and yet you are stealing their future in front of their very eyes.”

But change is inevitable. Either the system will change or the climate will change. And right now we need to change the system, because the consequences of the latter are disastrous, and, unfortunately, are happening right now. By changing the system, we change that “I hope” to “I will.”

By changing the system, you give us a future to dream for. – Yours, etc,

KATE HARTY (15),

Ennis,

Co Clare.