Thunberg’s rallying cry for climate action is heard around the world
Thousands of environmental activists have staged a rally outside the German parliament to call on politicians to take stronger action to tackle climate change.
The demonstration at the Reichstag in Berlin comes before a national election to be held tomorrow.
This was part of a series of rallies around the world amid severe warnings the planet faces dangerous temperature increases unless greenhouse gas emissions are sharply reduced.
The idea of a global ‘climate strike’ was inspired by Swedish teenager Greta Thunberg’s solo protest in Stockholm three years ago.
It snowballed in a mass movement until the coronavirus pandemic put an end to large gatherings. Activists have only recently started organizing smaller rallies.
German activists have called tomorrow’s elections “the vote of the century”, arguing that the decision taken by the next government will influence the country’s efforts to tackle climate change for decades.
Yesterday’s rally was a multigenerational event, attracting schoolchildren and adults alike.
René Bohrenfeldt, a computer expert attending the Berlin rally, said he hoped older Germans would take the issue into account when voting.
“The majority of voters are over 50 and determine the outcome of the election,” he said.
“I call on all grandmothers to make the right decision for the climate and for their grandchildren. ”
Christiane Koetter-Lietz, who was present with her children and grandchildren, said she would vote for the German Green Party, which has campaigned for tougher measures to cut greenhouse gas emissions.
“We have water disasters, fire disasters, the world is on fire. This is the very last warning, “said the 69-year-old.
Global warming has also been a major electoral issue in Iceland, where voters today go to the polls for a general election.
All the holidays recognize global warming as a force for change in a subarctic landscape, but disagree on how to respond to it.
Other protests took place across Europe including Ireland, Italy and the UK, and around the world in countries like India and Japan.