Southern Utah University students participated in a climate strike on Friday, Sept. 27 in front of the Sherratt Library. Organized by the university’s Sustainability Club, students and several community members gathered with signs and banners to march around campus.
Similar climate strikes have taken place in over 150 countries all around the world. Students seeking to better the environment feel the education gained in school should be used in that pursuit. These students show their complaints by leaving school to rally for changes on a larger scale.
This movement was initiated by Greta Thunberg, a 16-year-old activist from Sweden. She inspired students all over the world to take similar action, by protesting against school and education. Thunberg’s goal is to show local and national governments that climate change is affecting future generations.
Progress needs to be made now, according to Thunberg, in order for the next generation to have a brighter future.
According to protesters, climate change is taking place due to fossil fuels and harmful substances being released into our atmosphere, while government officials seem oblivious.
Those who participate in the strikes persist that while personal initiatives are helpful, action must be taken by local, national and global politicians to enact lasting change.
Annie Weight, a member of SUU’s Sustainability Club and leader of SUU’s climate strike, believes that calling attention to a cause that you feel is important is crucial to her–and the climate is definitely high on her personal list.
“We want to show governments and businesses that this is something that matters,” Weight said. “This will inspire action in others who attend the strikes as well.”
After parading around SUU’s campus, the group stopped in front of Old Main. Group members were then allowed to give short speeches to motivate and inspire the rest of the climate strike crew.
Garrett Schmidt, a participator in the strike and Junior here at SUU, pointed out that the strike’s purpose.
“I hope everyone knows that when we are on strike it is out of our love for our earth,” he said. “It is to spread awareness so others can see how they can be more sustainable in everyday living.”
The Sustainability Club president, Paul Rhodes came up with an initiative he presented at the strike. The initiative contains goals for how SUU can be more sustainable, and eventually carbon neutral. This Initiative was presented to president Wyatt, and in the coming weeks be written in more official terms by the Southern Utah University Student Association
The Sustainability club meets in the library in room 201 every Wednesday at 6 and always welcome more members.
Story by: Moriah Spainhower
Photos courtesy of: Annie Weight