Friday, March 5, 2021

The youth of today are creating a path for tomorrow!
F
ind out what some Riverside students think about the recent climate movement.

For today’s generation, Friday is no longer just a celebration for the weekend in which parties are thrown in anticipation for what the next few days have in store. They are no longer just for after school relaxation; Fridays, are now for the future.  

Many scientists have made it clear that if no action is taken, our planet may soon become inhabitable. This sobering and terrifying thought has motivated many people to take charge and draw attention to a problem that will affect everyone if action isn’t taken. 

16yearold, Greta Thunberghas taken action and created a movement in response to the lack of action that is currently the reality in many countries. In August 2018, Thunberg used to cut class alone in protest each Friday in her native country of Sweden.  But in 2019, #FridaysForTheFuture has gone global, with thousands of people of different ages and backgrounds inspired by Greta and marching peacefully to gain attention for action on climate change. Thunberg recently spoke to the United Nations on the state of our planet on September 23, 2019. She spoke about what the majority of teenagers and young adults fear about growing up on a dying planet. People are suffering. People are dying. Entire ecosystems are collapsing. We are in the beginning of a mass extinction. And all you can talk about is money and fairy tales of eternal economic growth. How dare you!” Thunberg spoke these powerful words to the United Nation’s assembly.  

Greta has inspired youth across the world to take initiative in their communities, to start fundraisers, go on marches, and encourage organisations to take action. A local student association, Sustainabiliteens Vancouver, plans to strike one Friday per month. On Friday, October 25, another march was held in Downtown Vancouver in front of the Art Gallery, with Greta Thunberg as a guest speaker. This group consists of a group of teenagers and young adults striving for a future. At the September 27, 100 thousand people were present, chanting and demanding action to be taken. “It’s really powerful because this is a youth-organized strike and this time is special because we’re inviting adults and other people to join us in our movement,” said co-organizer Samantha Lin to CTV News. Indigenous voices are also part of the movement out of the movement. 15-year-old, Autumn Peltier began her clean water activism at the age of eight and when she was 13, spoke to the United Nations on the issue of water protection. Many indigenous people have been advocating for the environment for years, yet their voices are often ignored.   

With the state of our planet today, it may be easy to lose hope, but with the millions of people taking action today, a hopeful future is possible. This on-going movement will be one that will find its place in history books… If the correct action is taken. The youth of today are creating a future for the youth of tomorrow, and they are doing an excellent job of it. Students at Riverside had much to say about the movement, each of them trying their best to do what they can to reduce their impact on the environment.