U of T students protest government inaction on climate change | rabble.ca
They’re young, passionate about environmental causes and deeply concerned about the future of our planet.
So naturally they’re upset with federal, provincial and territorial governments that, by 2020, will only reach the halfway mark of Canada's goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 17 per cent below 2005 levels.
“It’s so important for people our age to get involved in the climate movement,” said Tom McCarthy, an organizer with the University of Toronto Environmental Action (UTEA), a group that advocates for more effective government policy on climate change and other environmental issues at the federal, provincial, and municipal levels.
“If we don’t take this seriously and don’t start to push the people in power to make the changes that need to happen now, then we’re in big trouble.”
On Friday morning, more than 60 people, including students and community members, marched from Convocation Hall at the University of Toronto to the steps of the Ontario legislature to send a clear message to the new leader of the Liberal party and Premier of Ontario.
“Young people are not going to quietly accept an out of control environment and a broken environmental inheritance from our parent’s generation,” said McCarthy.“Little has been accomplished by our elected leaders in the fight to reduce emissions and prepare for an uncertain future of droughts, food stress and extreme weather.”
McCarthy and his colleagues came to Queen’s Park to deliver an open letter to the new Premier. The same letter was later sent to the Prime Minister and the other Premiers across the country.
These students are frustrated by having little, if any, input into the climate change decisions made by the federal and provincial governments.
“Yet we are the ones who will pay the future costs resulting from the failure to take effective action to reduce emissions,” said McCarthy.