Support for climate strike students from CSIRO staff

The school student movement demanding action on climate change continues to receive the warm support of the CSIRO Staff Association; the union representing hundreds of the world’s best climate and environmental researchers.

Thousands of Australian school students are expected to rally across the country on Friday 20 September as part of a global climate strike; following a series of international protests in March and last November.

A large number of unions, community organisations and corporations have announced support for the student strike action.

Taking a stand for science

“Students around the world are taking a stand for science. They are calling on decision makers to heed the advice of scientists on climate change.” CSIRO Staff Association Secretary Sam Popovski said.

“Younger generations are at the forefront of advocating for the uptake of scientific findings in the decision making of politicians and business leaders.”

While past events have attracted criticism of the students from conservative politicians and media commentators; a growing number of organisations and corporations have made public statements supporting the climate strike action.

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Groundswell of support

Many Australian unions and peak bodies have backed the students including the Community and Public Sector Union, United Voice, National Tertiary and Education Union, Victorian Trades Hall Council and the ASU.

Meanwhile a large group of businesses and organisation led by tech company Atlassian have formed a group to support the student strikes called Not Business As Usual. Other companies participating in the alliance include Keep Cup, Future Super, Bank Australia, Canva, Redbubble, Vero, Domain, Private Media and Text Publishing.

“Humanity faces a climate change emergency. It’s a crisis that demands leadership and action. But we can’t rely on governments alone,” Atlassian Chief Executive Mike Cannon-Brookes said.

“Sadly, in Australia, we can’t rely on them at all. Businesses and individuals must also play their part and this responsibility is even more urgent when governments fail,” Mr Cannon-Brookes said.

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UN Climate Action Summit

The international wave of school student strikes will occur in the days leading up to the United Nation’s Climate Action summit in New York. The event calls on all leaders to attend “with concrete, realistic plans to enhance their nationally determined contributions by 2020, in line with reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 45 per cent over the next decade, and to net zero emissions by 2050,” as per the so-called Paris Agreement.

Greta Thunberg – the teenage climate activist from Sweden and widely credited as the inspiration behind the student protest movement – will address the UN summit in a historic first.

Thunberg arrived on the east coast of the United States recently after making the voyage from Europe across the Atlantic by sailboat, eschewing the flight to send a message about emissions involved with air travel.

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