Climate crisis

January 2019: A sixteen-year-old girl sits on a chair and addresses her audience, “Our house is on fire.”

Greta Thunberg first gained recognition for spending her school days outside the Swedish parliament. Next to her, a handmade sign read “skolstreijk för klimatet” – School strike for climate. At first, she sat alone. But soon other students joined her. Others began similar strikes in their own communities. By December, there were school strikes taking place every Friday somewhere in the world.

Now, at 18, Greta Thunberg is one of the most vocal environmental activists in the world. She has been instrumental in raising awareness for climate change.

For years, experts warned of the devastating effects of climate change. Now, they are here: scorching temperatures, melting ice caps, freak snowstorms, wildfires, coral bleaching. In 2019, more than 11,000 scientists officially declared a “climate emergency”.

Thunberg has called for change from governments and individuals. Last year, in the midst of the global pandemic, Thunberg told a YouTube audience of thousands, “We have to adapt. That is what you have to do in a crisis.”

How can we adapt to help during the climate crisis?

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Assembly

Humans have released trillions of tonnes of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere since the Industrial revolution, and numbers continue to rise. This video asks: who is to blame?

Activities

  1. Make a banner to take on a School Strike for Climate near you.
  2. Write an article in the style of The Day about the climate crisis. Use the internet to find facts and figures, and don’t forget to write a catchy headline.
  3. Research one of the following: coral bleaching, rising sea levels, mass extinction. Make a presentation about your chosen subject and how it is affected by climate change.