Doane students, faculty, and Crete community members came together on Friday, Sept 20th in hopes of proving to elected leaders that they demand meaningful action towards climate change policy.
Climate Reality Project Corps President, Zachary Renshaw, sent out an email four days before the day of the strike urging participation from the community to “join the tens of thousands of people across the country,” who are standing up for the issue.
“We are all connected and our voices must be heard,” said Renshaw.
The demands that the strikers sought were :
A Green New Deal: To transform our economy 100% clean, renewable energy by 2030 and “halt to all leasing and permitting for fossil fuel extraction.
Respect of Indigenous Land and Sovereignty: Honor treaties that protect Indigenous lands, waters, and sovereignty; recognize Rights of Nature into law.
Environmental Justice: “A form of investing in prosperity for communities that have been affected by poverty, pollution, and climate crisis
Protection & Restoration of Biodiversity: Protecting and restoring 50% percent of the world's lands and oceans, including the stopping of deforestation by 2030.
Implementation of Sustainable Agriculture: Investing in farmers and regenerative agriculture; putting an end to subsidies for industrial agriculture
Vice President for Climate Reality Project Corps, Alec Piper said that because it is other students advocating for the issue, and not a stranger, it connects more personally with individuals.
"I am hoping that my fellow classmates realize that dealing with climate change is something that we, the younger generations are going to have to live with and are going to have to tackle,” said Piper. “The consequences will only become more costly the more we ignore this issue and delay action to fight the climate crisis.”
Even though no more than 35 people attended the strike, Piper said he was happy with the turnout and the fact that students were able to walk by and take a glimpse of the event because of its location at Cassle Theatre.
Eight Crete Highschool students were in attendance supporting the cause and bringing awareness to their club, GROW. A student for the club said that they are trying to increase recycling around Crete, clean up trash in the community, and to find new ways to work with Doane in the future.
Tina Rockenbach, the Cardinal Union Cite Coordinator is one of the advisors for the club and said that the group just began last year and is trying to gain recognition.
“Initially we had three kids with no sponsor, and now we are up to ten to twelve students, as well as Jacque Kuzma who is their full-time advisor,” said Rockenbach.
Rochenbach said that the group is starting off small and simple and is “always looking to find ways to partner with Doane.”
Renshaw urged the audience to action at the close of his statement saying, “we are tired of doing nothing, so let’s get to work.”