‘Inspiring’ climate strike held in Chichester
Students and campaigners have joined together in Chichester to demand action to solve the worldwide climate crisis.
An estimated 200 people turned up at Chichester's market cross this morning (Friday September 20), with attendees sounding the 'alarm' on climate change, giving speeches and forming a human chain up North Street.
One group of Chichester University students who attended Friday's demonstration spoke of their frustration at the Government not giving climate change enough priority.
One of them said: "The Government is not doing enough and climate change is not being seen as a real priority."
Another said about the planet: "It's an incredible place and we are ruining it. Nobody owns the world but we are deciding we can destroy it and we have no respect for it. We want to have a future where it's a nice place."
Another group of young people also vented their frustration at decision makers. One said: "The Government is not doing enough to stop this. They are on the side of the big companies rather than on our side. We need to be heard so they are paying attention and will put it higher up the agenda.
"It's so important to get out here and do something otherwise there is not going to be a planet to live in that is going to be humanly hospitable."
Molly Maddocks, the university students' union environmental officer, was one of the speakers to stand up on the soapbox. She said: "We need to change the way everybody sees the world."
Stephanie Holmes, 17, a student at Chichester High School's sixth form and chair of Chichester's Young Liberal Democrats, said she was 'utterly fed up with the priorities of the Government at the moment'. She added: "It's absolutely fantastic everybody is here in Chichester today. For such a long time the city has not seen many protests and we have seen quite a few recently and it's inspiring to see so many of you here today. We need climate action now in Chichester and across the globe."
She has been in Bournemouth for her party's conference and spoke to the Observer about the 'fantastic policy' that had been adopted there to stop climate change.
Tom Broughton a member of Extinction Rebellion Chichester, said campaigners were out today to support the youth climate strike with some great speeches given by students.
He suggested that while renewable energy and electric vehicles were important, the world also needs to cut consumption and bring about societal change. In the UK they believe a national citizens assembly should be set up as a way of driving meaningful policy on climate change.
He said: “We want to hear what young people have to say because it’s their future we are trying to protect.”