Students protest to raise awareness for environmental problems

Lindsay Wu

In order to demand action regarding climate change, students skipped class to participate in an international, youth-led strike at Los Angeles City Hall on March 15.

In the past four years, global temperatures have reached unprecedented highs, according to CNN. Across the world, extreme weather conditions such as floods, wildfires and droughts occur with increasing frequency.

“Climate change is an issue that everyone in our community knows about, but doesn’t care enough about,” Environmental Club President and strike participant Anja Clark ’19 said. “I can’t stress enough how integral it is that we are engaged in the issue and are pushing for positive change. There is no one besides us students pressing the issue. I hope that the movement was seen so that the administration, local and federal, see that this is a matter that really, really cannot be overlooked.”

Protesters supported immediate reform and the Green New Deal, a legislation to decarbonize the country. In addition to recently increased greenhouse gas emission rates, decades of government inaction have left only 11 years to implement change, according to a 2018 report from the United Nations governmental panel on Climate Change.

Approximately ten thousand students missed school to strike, according to CNN.

“I generally find strikes to be ineffective ways of achieving political change, but to see thousands of kids holding signs about global warming shows that we live in a society where students are better educated on environmental abuses,” Advanced Placement Environmental Science student and Environmental Club member Guy Hartstein ’20 said.

Upper School Student Discipline and Attendance Coordinator Gabe Preciado said students were not penalized for their absence.

“It’s exciting that kids are united globally for a truly universal cause,” Clark said. “By skipping a day of school, we show that this is something that we value as much as our education. Just as a school will give us a brighter future, so will having a planet to live on.”