TCDSU and Extinction Rebellion TCD join school climate strike

Around twenty Trinity students took to the streets today to support the school climate strike

Representatives of Trinity College Dublin Students’ Union (TCDSU) and Extinction Rebellion TCD joined the school climate strike in Dublin today.

Around twenty Trinity students gathered in front square today at noon before marching to the main site of the protest outside Leinster House. They were greeted by hundreds of primary school and secondary school students chanting “climate change has got to go.”

Picket signs were held up high with slogans such as “Ironman didn’t die for this” and “Our voices can’t be drowned”.

Speaking to Trinity News, TCDSU President Laura Beston stated: “TCDSU are supporting the school strike today as the current ecological crisis we are facing is one that will have a profound impact on the current college community.”

She added: “It is important that we support actions that lobby the government to bring in legislation that will protect the planet and our future on it, where possible. With many communities across the world and Ireland seeing changes in climate affected their living conditions we owe it to our community in Trinity to support the strike that is happening today.”

As the protest proceeded, many other chants continued to fill the streets, voices ringing out “seas are rising, so are we” and “there is no Planet B”. This was accompanied by a banging drum.

Louise Coffey spoke to Trinity News on behalf of Extinction Rebellion at the protest: “Extinction Rebellion are here because our planet is in grave danger. Our government has declared a climate emergency, but it is only for show”, adding that “We have to make them listen.”

School climate strikes started back in August 2018, when Great Thunberg began spending her school days outside the Swedish parliament to call for stronger action on global warming by holding up a sign saying (in Swedish) “School strike for the climate”. Not long after, students and young people worldwide joined Thunberg in protesting climate change.

Today’s strike was proceeded two similar large-scale strikes on the streets of Dublin for climate change. Back in March and September, thousands of students and teachers took to the streets of Dublin.

Yesterday afternoon the EU parliament declared a “climate emergency”. The vote came as scientists warned that the world may have already crossed a series of climate tipping points, resulting in “a state of planetary emergency”. However, protesters claim their declaration is empty if it is not backed up by sufficient action.

Shannon Connolly

Shannon Connolly is a staff writer for Trinity News, and a Junior Fresh English and Philosophy student.