Global protest seeks to turn up heat on leaders over climate
BERLIN (AP) — Youth activists are hoping to turn up the heat on governments Friday with the first large-scale international protest against climate change in six months.
Greta Thunberg and fellow activists said Monday they plan to stage demonstrations in cities around the world, weeks before leaders gather for a U.N. summit in Glasgow.
“It has been a very, very strange year and a half with this pandemic, but of course, the climate crisis has not disappeared,” Thunberg told reporters. “It’s the opposite, it’s even more urgent now than it was before.”
Recent scientific reports paint a dire picture of the international effort to curb greenhouse gas emissions, and the U.N. warned this week that more needs to be done if the goals of the 2015 Paris climate accord are to remain within reach.
Vanessa Nakate, a campaigner from Uganda, said the protest on Friday would focus on climate justice, highlighting how those countries that have historically contributed the least to global warming are seeing some of the most brutal impacts, from droughts to floods and famine.
Referring to the upcoming U.N. climate meeting known as COP26, Nakate said “we expect that leaders are going to give talks, speeches and sweet nothings.”
She urged governments that have pledged to sharply reduce their greenhouse gas emissions to follow through by not building new fossil fuel infrastructure such as coal-fired power plants or oil pipelines.
Germany is expected to see some of the biggest protests, two days before the country goes to the polls to elect a new parliament. Many voters have cited climate change as the main issue in Sunday's election, though the environmentalist Green party isn't currently forecast to win.
“The real scandal of this election is that in the year 2021, in the midst of the...