September 20, Let's Strike for Our Future

The climate and ecological crisis is a global crisis, the biggest crisis humanity has ever faced. And if we don’t manage to work together to cooperate and to work together, despite our differences, then we will fail. So we need to stand together and support each other and to take action because otherwise it may be too late. So let’s not wait any longer, let’s do it now.
— Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg arrived in New York City by boat

This piece appeared first on the Missoula Current website - August 30, 2019

The recent news regarding the climate crisis is truly disturbing--the Amazon is on fire. The Montana Hi-Line, a major part of the world's breadbasket, has been pin-pointed as a hot spot in the climate crisis which is likely one day to impact the world’s food supply. Yesterday, the Trump administration announced disturbing plans to relax rules around methane emissions—a major contributor to climate change gases. If we don’t heed Greta’s call, what will the future look like for our children and today’s young adults?

If you’re feeling overwhelmed, you’re not alone. We all are. But one of the most powerful antidotes to despair and feeling isolated is to take action to address the climate crisis, and engage in building community. Action and connection relieve fear, and more importantly actually move us toward a livable future for our young people and children.

On Friday, September 20, Greta Thunberg and students around the world are calling for adults to join them in a Global Climate Strike: a day of rallies, demonstrations, and actions that will kick off a week of climate education and action and spark a broad movement for change based on communities standing together.

No one is too small to make a difference. A year ago, Greta began striking on Fridays in front of Swedish Parliament. Since then, her ‘Skolstrejk för klimatet’ (School Strike for the Climate) has galvanized millions of students around the world into the climate movement to stand up for their future.  They are scared, and they know that so far government and industry, and the world of adults generally, have failed to address the crisis. They are challenging all adults to step up and work alongside them to ensure they have a livable future.

The Global Climate Strike on September 20 is an opportunity for everyone to step into the movement. Joining our community in the streets by leaving work and school will actually have an impact—large visible strikes and demonstrations have been shown to make a difference in public opinion and increase the importance of an issue in a community. Only this time we’re not just talking about a single “issue” but the gravest existential threat ever to face humanity, not to mention millions of other species. September 20th is poised to be the largest climate demonstration ever, and if ever there was a time to join the movement, this is it.

So plan now to leave work or school to join the Global Climate Strike on Friday, September 20, and support the students and young people by showing up in person. Support them by allowing their participation in the rally and other activities. Your presence on September 20th will help the world send a signal to leaders that we’re done with business as usual, we want a livable future and we’re showing up to demand it.

Here’s the schedule for the 20th so far:

10 a.m. - Morning kick-off rally at Caras Park

Organized by a group of high school and college students and young adults working together as PANIC!. Visit missoulaclimatestrike.org to learn more about the morning rally, and other student-oriented events on the 20th and the week that follows. 

12 p.m. - 1 p.m. - Demonstration at NorthWestern Energy

Gather with other concerned community members to “Sound the Alarm” and demand that the monopoly abandon its current plan to build a new generation of fossil-fuel generators and transition to 100-percent renewable energy by 2030. Led by 350 Montana.

1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. - “Families Strike for Our Future” rally

Join us at the County Courthouse on Broadway as middle-schoolers and families with young children will gather together to demand a sustainable future. Hear from these young leaders, and local activists and organizations about solutions and how to get involved in Missoula. There will be a children’s art area sponsored by Families for a Livable Climate.

3 – 5 p.m. - Restoration project on Rattlesnake Creek

Plant trees, shrubs and help with seeding as part of a restoration project on Rattlesnake Creek. Organized by Families for a Livable Climate + Climate Smart Missoula and in partnership with Missoula's Parks and Recreation Department. RSVPs are required for this event. RSVP to livableclimate@gmail.com.

11 a.m. - 7 p.m. - Climate Action Montana "Parklet"

Stop by the “parklet” at 111 North Higgins to learn more about Climate Strike activities, have conversations about climate, and engage in opportunities to call and write your elected officials. Sponsored by Climate Action Montana.

There will be many other community events during the week that follows the Global Climate Strike, from September 20 – 28, including the Missoula Clean Energy Expo on the 28th, all about celebrating our clean energy present and future.

 

Winona Bateman