Climate: The Next Generation

What do they want? Climate Justice! When do they want it? You guessed it.

Young activists are taking to the streets to call for immediate action against climate change.

Young people rallied for climate action on Mothers' Day in San Francisco and ten other California cities and towns. (Photo: Chris Penalosa)

Youth turned out in eleven cities across California over the weekend in a series of coordinated demonstrations.

Dubbed the i-Matter marches, youth from Eureka to San Diego and from grammar school to college, demanded “climate justice” for their generation. The marches follow a recent lawsuit filed by young people against the Federal government and all 50 states, to force more aggressive reductions of greenhouse gases.

“In terms of climate change, the US has basically failed us,” said sixteen-year-old Ventura native Alec Loorz one of the lead plantiffs in the suit.

Sixteen-year-old Alec Loorz is one of the organizers of the iMatter youth rallies. (Photo: Chris Penalosa)

“I’m involved in this lawsuit where young people are suing the government for not protecting our right for a livable future and for not protecting our right to grow up in the planet that has sustained all civilization.”

This past weekend’s marches might’ve been trumped by Mothers’ Day, as turnout was generally light around the state. Estimates put the San Francisco rally at between 100 and 200 people, while The Sacramento Bee reported that fewer than 100 turned out in Sacramento.

But the youth activists aren’t done yet.

“I’ve found that our entire generation has this inherent sense of calling towards climate change,” said Loorz, at the San Francisco event. “We know that it affects our generation most and we are ready to do whatever we can to change it.”

More than 150 marches are currently planned in 25 countries, worldwide.

Climate: The Next Generation 9 May,2011Christopher Penalosa

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