Africa: 5 Reasons to Join the Global Climate Strikes

press release

Over 2,500 events in 117 countries have been planned for the Global Climate Strikes on 20 and 27 September. Greta Thunberg, Amnesty International's 2019 Ambassador of Conscience, and other young leaders have called on people of all ages to join them.

We'll be taking part in the climate strikes. Here are 5 reasons why you should too:

#1 It is your right

No matter how young or old you are, you have the right to peacefully protest and have your voice heard. Everyone should feel welcome to take part in the global climate strikes, especially given the urgency and gravity of the climate emergency we're facing.

#2 A safe future

The young people of today will live in a future endangered by climate change. Millions of people are already suffering from its catastrophic effects - from prolonged drought in sub-Saharan Africa to devastating tropical storms sweeping across South-east Asia and the Caribbean and heatwaves that have set record temperatures in Europe. All the science suggests that extreme weather will only get worse unless governments take urgent action to slash emissions within the shortest possible timeframe.

#3 Climate justice is inextricably linked to human rights

Human rights are intimately linked with climate change because of its devastating effect on not just the environment but our own wellbeing. In addition to threatening our very existence, climate change is having harmful impacts on many of our rights such as to our right to life, health, food, water, housing and, livelihoods Those who are already marginalised and living in poverty are often hit the hardest. The longer governments wait to take meaningful action, the harder the problem becomes to solve, and the greater the risk that emissions will only be reduced through means that increase inequality rather than reduce it.

#4 Political leaders must be held to account to do more

The latest pledges made by governments to mitigate climate change-- which haven't even been implemented yet--are completely inadequate as they would still lead to a catastrophic 3°C increase in average global temperatures over pre-industrial levels by 2100. We need to put pressure on politicians to commit to halving emissions from their 2010 levels by 2030, and to net-zero by 2050, as climate scientists have called for.

#5 Change happens when we stand together

As Greta Thunberg and the young people taking part in the Fridays for Future movement have shown, there is power in numbers. Anything is possible when people join together to stand up for human rights. With determination and creativity, schoolchildren are telling politicians and authorities from around the world what they ought to do to protect rights in the face of the climate catastrophe.

Now is the time to join them. #strikeforclimate

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