School climate protest draws 120

"No more coal, no more oil, keep your carbon in the soil."

That was just one of the many chants ringing through the main streets of Oamaru yesterday, as more than 120 secondary school pupils and members of the community took part in the School Strike 4 Climate Waitaki.

The group walked from Orana Park to Friendly Bay, stopping at the Waitaki District Council chambers to hand their demands to Waitaki Mayor Gary Kircher.

St Kevin’s College pupil Koru Barry (16) protests as part of the School Strike 4 Climate outside...
St Kevin’s College pupil Koru Barry (16) protests as part of the School Strike 4 Climate outside the Waitaki District Council building yesterday. PHOTO: RUBY HEYWARD
School Strike 4 Climate Waitaki representative Ethan Reille (16) asked the council to honour its responsibility to the Pacific Islands, reduce its agricultural admissions and promote climate education.

Looking after Pacific Island nations was vital in Waitaki, as the district had one of highest number of Pasifika people in New Zealand outside Auckland, he said.

Ethan, who is also the national media representative for School Strike 4 Climate, told the crowd they needed to continue being unapologetic about their stridency.

"It is a crisis. It is not the time to be polite, and it is not the time to sugarcoat the scenario," he said.

Having a large group of both pupils and wider community members made organisers feel empowered.

"To see the community being involved, the school students being involved, to see teachers being involved — it gave us that verification that we were doing something that was felt across the community.

"It just shows that this movement is inter-generational — it’s not just for young people to respond to," Ethan said.

Other than Dunedin, Oamaru was the only southern centre where a climate strike was held yesterday.

kayla.hodge@odt.co.nz

Comments

LOL

Mob of sheep. Baaaa

To the previous two commentators: Why stoop low to criticize teens (children) for being brave and making a stand about an issue they believe in? Those comments seem trollish/bullying towards the teens at the protest, and to the teen audience reading this.
Save your online criticism and negativity for adults. Or ... how about don't use that trollish negativity in this forum, when people are doing no wrong?
I am grateful these students care and are making a stand. Thank you to the students who protested!

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