Students take to the streets for 4 school climate strike


Thousands of students marched in the first protest against the 4 schools climate strike in New Zealand since Covid-19 struck, submitting demands to Parliament and clashing with the mayor of Christchurch.

Photo: RNZ

In Christchurch, a mix of students and older protesters shouted at Mayor Lianne Dalziel after her response to their demands.

They marched from the Cathedral Square to the Civic Building with local demands, including investments in green and free public transport, a greater emphasis on climate education and to stop the development of Tarras Airport.

Dalziel told the crowd the demands were high and the change “required everyone’s work.” As she said the change was needed, there were calls from the crowd about “what are you going to do”.

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The mayor said the young people should make submissions to Environment Canterbury’s (the regional council) long-term plan, and the crowd started shouting it.

Dalziel said she would meet with protest leaders about their demands, but would not go into details with the crowd. An organizer made a stirring and raucous appeal to the mayor to make the right choice.

In Auckland, more than 1,000 students marched on Queen Street chanting, “Hey, hey. Ho, ho. Climate change has to go away.”

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Most of the crowd were students and many were holding signs demanding a change in attitude to stop global warming.

Maddie Atkinson, a 13th year Marist College student, says she wants to show her school how important it is to use her voice.

“It’s a big problem, like climate change, you know it’s taking over our world and even though in New Zealand we don’t really feel much of an impact, like the weight of it. made to our world, there are so many. many people in less economically developed countries who are unable to make changes.

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“But with us doing something, with us changing, you know, we can speak for them.”

In Wellington, around 4,000 students listened to speakers during an open microphone session outside Parliament.

Climate Change Minister James Shaw met with the students, who marched from Civic Square to the steps of Parliament, and received a list of demands calling for government action on climate change.

They urged Shaw to ensure that the transition to a zero carbon economy is done in a fair and equitable manner.

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