Students rally in Halifax to urge government action on climate change

·2 min read
The number of students at Victoria Park grew quickly as the rally began. (Paul Palmeter/CBC - image credit)
The number of students at Victoria Park grew quickly as the rally began. (Paul Palmeter/CBC - image credit)

A crowd of 1,000 high school students marched through the streets of Halifax on Friday to urge government action on climate change.

"We would like government to set really clear and achievable goals for climate change that are progressive," said Lillian Hougan-Veenema, a Grade 12 student at Citadel High School in Halifax.

"We'd like to see actual infrastructure in place that will show us how these targets can be achieved."

On a professional development day for teachers in the province, the students gathered at Halifax's Victoria Park. They marched their way through several streets before arriving at the Nova Scotia legislature, where they made a brief stop.

Paul Palmeter/CBC
Paul Palmeter/CBC

Amelia Penney-Crocker, a Grade 11 student at Citadel High, is no stranger in pushing the government to act on climate change.

She wrote a letter per week to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau about climate action from December 2019 to December 2020. Trudeau was re-elected earlier this week.

"He clearly knows climate change is a big issue, but, similar to the provincial government, he needs to lay out more accountability and a plan that outlines exactly how we are going to tackle this," she said.

"I'm talking about how we are going to get to our targets and beyond them to ensure that we are going to have a safe future."

Paul Palmeter/CBC
Paul Palmeter/CBC

The theme for the march was "uproot the system."

The students say climate change is becoming more of an issue as each year passes.

"The climate crisis is not just one issue," said Hougan-Veenema. "it's many issues that are coming together, and we need the government to realize climate change is impacting every single level of our society.

"When I look forward into the future, I see that we could be in a really terrible place in 10, 20, 30 years. But by organizing these protests, it gives me a lot of hope for our future and it makes me feel like we can get to a better place."


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