MANILA, 24 May 2019 — Over 500 students and other youth advocates across the Philippines joined today’s global youth climate strike, with 300 from different universities and organizations across Metro Manila holding a carnival-like march to Mendiola to call for more ambitious climate action from the government.
Organizers of the second global strike for climate estimate that the youth strikes were held in 1,600 areas in 118 countries as of May 23. It was inspired by the Swedish youth activist Greta Thunberg, who held the first school strike for the climate outside Sweden’s parliament building in August 2018, and has since grown into a global movement of over 100,000 students.
“Our survival is non-negotiable, that’s why we are taking the streets because climate change, is the biggest problems facing the world and it isn’t being addressed quickly enough.” said Jefferson Estela a student of Polytechnic University of the Philippines and the lead convenor of Youth Strike for Climate Philippines, one of the organizations that are leading the climate strike.
Filipino youth strikers are calling on the Duterte administration to take urgent and ambitious action as a response to the climate crisis, given that the Philippines is among the most vulnerable countries to climate impacts.
“It is ironic that students have to be the ones to teach governments and corporations how to act on the climate crisis,” said Joanne Lim, a youth striker from Manila. “Young people must not be seen as just victims of climate change but as agents of change. And now we are taking to the streets because far too little has been done to secure our future.”
Youth climate strikes were also organized in Cebu, Davao, Iloilo, Koronadal,Bacolod, General Santos, Tacloban, Antipolo, Pampanga and Bulacan.
“We are drawing the line where adults have failed our generation. Scientists have stated that we cannot allow any new coal plants to be built if want to prevent catastrophic climate change,” argues Luke Borromeo of Agham Youth, a student organization that advocates for the development and utilization of science and technology for the service of the people.
“Climate leadership is coming from people on the frontlines of the climate crisis, demanding that governments likewise rise up the level of action that the crisis demands, by phasing coal projects in the countries energy mix and ramping up investments on renewable energy that benefits both people and the planet.” Madelene De Borja, of KAISA UP, a student political party based in the University of the Philippines Diliman.
Climate Youth Strike Philippines is a convergence of youth and student climate advocates who believe that climate vulnerable countries like the Philippines should take leadership in implementing urgent and ambitious action as a response to the climate crisis.
Coordinator 350.org Pilipinas:
+639272412743, [email protected]