Young people call for a global day for climate action
The terrible flooding in Queensland and NSW has reminded us that the impacts of climate change are increasingly present and increasingly severe.
The School Strike 4 Climate (SS4C) movement has declared a global day of action for Friday, 25 March.
Young people, including those within our own church, are urging us to support them. Here is some information on what they are calling for and how Uniting Church members and congregations can show support.
Global School Strike 4 Climate Action- Friday 25 March
Our young people are calling for an end to fossil fuel company donations to government and government subsidies to the industry.
They continue to urge for Net zero emission by 2030 and no new coal, oil or gas projects, 100 percent renewable energy generation and exports by 2030 and the funding a planned transition and job creation for workers and communities dependent on fossil fuels.
There will face to face rallies in cities and towns across NSW. Check out the SS4C website to find out where.
How you can support our young people’s call for climate action
There are many ways you can show your support:
- If you are able, attend a local SS4C action (use the link above to find if there is one near you). Even better, organise a group from your church to attend! Here are some ideas on how you can help that to happen.
- Put up again or keep displaying, any Uniting Church climate banners you have.
- Promote the SS4C action and your concern for stronger climate action on social media. Use the hashtags #VoteForOurFuture and #PeopleNotProfit Some SS4C social media resources can be found here.
- Pray (in worship and individually) for young people and the SS4C movement. Pray that our political leaders (of whatever persuasion) will respond positively to young people’s urgent appeal and that the next Federal government will reflect this in their climate policies. Here are some prayer resources to assist you.
- Volunteer as a Marshal (Sydney event only). Those over 18 years may be able to help in this very practical way.
- Contact your local federal Member of Parliament (phone, email) and let them know why you personally support stronger and more urgent action on global warming. This Uniting Church resource on climate change policy may assist you.
*These calls are consistent with last week’s 6th Assessment report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. That report stated that it is now unequivocal that “climate change is a threat to human wellbeing and planetary health” and, “any further delay in concerted anticipatory global action…will miss a brief and rapidly closing window of opportunity to secure a liveable and sustainable future for us all.”
For more information, please contact Jon O’Brien in the Uniting Advocacy team at: email@example.com or 0477 725 528
Video resources from the School Strike 4 Climate Webinar
In 2019 our Synod adopted a Synod Climate Action Strategy. One of the actions that decision committed our church to was to, “…. support initiatives taken by young people in advocating for action on climate change, including the global climate strikes.”
While there is strong community support for young people’s action on climate change – after all, they will be most affected by what we, their elders, do or fail to do, in the next few years- some have reservations about the School Strike 4 Climate movement. Occasionally, church members express concerns or questions as well.
That’s one reason, why last year, Uniting Earth, Uniting and the Synod held the Why does the Uniting Church support the School Strike 4 Climate webinar. This must have struck a chord, because 240 people joined in on the night. The event, hosted by journalist Julie McCrossin, highlighted the climate concerns of young people in the church and UCA schools, Pasifika and First Nations church members as well as other church leaders.
We’re biased, but we thought all the speakers were informative, passionate, and inspiring. Together, they gave a very strong account of exactly why we as a church should be supporting this movement, and how doing so is an act of faith and discipleship, not peripheral to it.
The whole event was recorded, but to make it more accessible and easier to use, we have edited the whole recording into six shorter videos on particular themes or discrete segments -including First Nations and Pasifika perspectives, Why climate action matters to young people, and How climate action is part of discipleship. We have also added some possible discussion questions.
We hope this resource can be useful for congregations, youth groups, environmental action groups and others, in considering issues around climate change, caring for the earth, Christian faith and discipleship, and more.
If you have any questions or would like more information, please contact Jon O’Brien at firstname.lastname@example.org or 0477 725 528