City climate rally
The result of three months work paraded around The Square on Saturday.
The city’s Youth Organise Climate March organised by teenage members of Youth Action Group Manawatu (YAGM), attracted hundreds, young and old to raise their concerns about climate change.
They joined thousands more in cities and town all over New Zealand as the Paris climate talks, also known as COP 21 – the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties – involving more than 190 nations, were about to commence.
YAGM’s Hannah Higgison says they organised the event to help send a strong message to world leaders that people are expecting ‘‘good decision making re: climate action to come out of their meeting’’.
‘‘We believe it’s important for youth to take a lead in fighting for a fair future and we are passionate about making change happen,’’ Hannah says.
During the rally, both Forest & Bird’s Brent Barrett and city councillor Chris Teo-Sherrell said the goals New Zealand was taking to the talks were not bold enough and undermined the country’s global reputation.
Pleased with the turnout, 17-year-old YAGM leader Kaia Costanza-van den Belt says it was her generation who would feel the long-term effects, but climate change was everybody’s issue.
‘‘We believe it’s important for youth to take a lead in fighting for a fair future.’’ Hannah Higgison