AL Youth Strikes Back Against Climate Change

Maggie Brown, Writer

On March 15th, Alabama youth organized a climate strike on the steps of Montgomery, where students from all across the state came to protest laws that neglect the environment. This is part of a global movement that got its start in Europe and spread all over the world.  Kids of all ages held signs in the rain and demanded that lawmakers take their concerns seriously.

Bob Jones junior Love Lundy was the co-organizer of this event, which was recognized by Time Magazine and Senator Doug Jones. “I knew that if we didn’t do this, there wouldn’t be one happening in Alabama,” she said on the process of planning the strike. “Alabama is going to be affected hard by climate change–it’s already being affected badly.” The US Youth Climate Strikes organization focuses specifically on the effects climate change has on low-income and marginalized communities. 

“We demand 100% renewable energy by 2030 or sooner!” The crowd chanted. The time is now, said the youths of our state; soon our planet won’t be livable anymore. Impassioned speakers rallied at the steps, making points on everything from damaged coral reefs to the impact of coal plants on our environment. “Scientists say we have 11 years until the consequences are irreversible,” said Isobel Hope, the other strike organizer. So where does that leave us?

According to the sixty kids present at the strike, it leaves us with no time to waste. “Before politicians criticize a Green New Deal, they need to look us in the eyes and realize that this is the only chance we have been given for a livable future,” said Hope. Soon, climate change won’t simply be a partisan issue. Taking care of our earth has to be an effort that transcends all barriers if we want to keep living in it, according to the heartfelt speakers. “We must be kind,” said Abigail, a UAB junior. “We must be empathetic, and we must be willing to listen to [both] sides. We are all just scared…we need teamwork more than anything now.”