The third Strike 4 Climate organised by School Strike 4 Climate NZ (SS4C NZ) will be the biggest yet. This time, students are calling on adults to join them too, as the climate crisis threatens everything they love and everyone’s collective home. September 27th’s Strike 4 Climate will be intergenerational: people all over New Zealand will come together as a united force to demand climate justice from the Government.
“We will not back down: we will continue to make our voices heard until all of our demands are met. The cost of inaction is far too high when our lives are at stake, cultures and homelands are at stake,” says Tony Huang, from SS4C NZ.
The school climate strikes on March 15 and May 24 mobilised over 38,000 combined. With the students now putting the call out to adults too, it is highly likely that the 27th will see the biggest climate strike mobilisation in Aotearoa to this day.
Companies such as Mevo, Commonsense, Macpac and Akina will be shutting up shop and joining the young people on the streets. SS4C NZ has also mustered support from unions such as PSA, First Union, NZ Union of Students’ Associations and the NZ Council of Trade Unions.
“It is great that union members are supporting us. Union members know the power of collective action – so it makes sense that they would understand why we are doing this. After all, there are no jobs on a dead planet. This is our only home,” says Sophie.
“Our representatives need to show us meaningful and immediate action that safeguards our futures on this planet. Nothing else will matter if we cannot look after the Earth for current and future generations.”
SS4C NZ has a list of demands for Government. Ultimately they want Government to do everything in its power to limit warming to 1.5 degrees Celcius. Specific demands are as follow:
- We demand that the Government acknowledges the magnitude of the climate crisis by declaring a climate emergency. This move will set the narrative for the urgent pace at which we need to act on climate change and must uphold our democratic values and obligations under Te Tiriti o Waitangi.
- We demand that all parties in Parliament support passing an ambitious Zero Carbon Act into law that puts in place a legally enforceable plan to get to net zero carbon by 2040.
- End fossil fuels – we demand that the Government ceases all exploration and extraction of fossil fuels. This includes not granting any extensions of existing permits. This must be paired with Government’s investment in renewable energy production and sustainable transport systems to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels as we know that this is causing communities to lose their homes and culture in the Pacific Islands right now. Our collective future is being put at stake.
- We demand that the Government invests in building a renewable and regenerative economy now. This means immediate investment in retraining and the provision of alternative jobs in clean, sustainable industries that don’t harm the ecosystems on which we depend for survival. This must be done through meaningful partnerships with communities, Tangata Whenua and youth to ensure a just transition and that no one is left behind.
- We demand that the Government honours its responsibility to our Pacific Island neighbours by ensuring its domestic climate policies align with the Paris Agreement 1.5 goal; releasing a public adaptation plan for Climate Change survivors to migrate to New Zealand with dignity; and actively supporting the regional and international diplomatic efforts of Pacific Islands Small Island Developing States (PSIDS) to increase climate ambition and mitigate the climate crisis before it’s too late.