A day before meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, four Fridays for Future leaders published an op-ed in The Guardian on Wednesday calling out world leaders for failing to tackle the planetary crisis despite the past two years of youth-led global protests demanding urgent action to achieve climate and environmental justice.
Greta Thunberg of Sweden, Luisa Neubauer of Germany, and Anuna de Wever van der Heyden and Adélaïde Charlier, both of Belgium, noted that their meeting with Merkel, whose government took over the European Council presidency in July, “will be exactly two years since the first school strike for the climate took place.”
Millions worldwide have joined the movement and taken to the streets to call for ambitious policies, “but over these past two years, the world has also emitted more than 80 gigatonnes of CO2,” the activists write. “We have seen continuous natural disasters taking place across the globe: wildfires, heatwaves, flooding, hurricanes, storms, thawing of permafrost, and collapsing of glaciers and whole ecosystems. Many lives and livelihoods have been lost. And this is only the very beginning.”
Although some world leaders have publicly recognized human-caused global heating as an “existential crisis,” organized summits to pave a sustainable path forward, and issued emergency declarations about the state of the planet, “when it comes to action we are still in a state of denial,” they charge. “The climate and ecological crisis has never once been treated as a crisis.”
…Specifically, the Fridays for Future leaders are calling for “halting all fossil fuel investments and subsidies, divesting from fossil fuels, making ecocide an international crime, designing policies that protect workers and the most vulnerable, safeguarding democracy, and establishing annual, binding carbon budgets based on the best available science.”
The school strike movement Fridays For Future calls for a global climate action day. On September 25th, demonstrations and manifestations will take place all across the globe, all adjusted according to Covid-19 circumstances.