- Created: Friday, 12 April 2019 13:11
- Written by Sam Vincent
‘We have not come here to beg world leaders to care. You have ignored us in the past and you will ignore us again. We have run out of excuses and we are running out of time. We have come here to let you know that change is coming, whether you like it or not. The real power belongs to the people.’
– Greta Thunberg, founder of the Global Youth Strike for Climate
According to a report published by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in October 2018, global emissions will need to reduce by 50% within 12 years if temperature rises are to be kept below the tipping point of 1.5°C. The UN Paris agreement requires signatory states to keep the global temperature increase ‘well below’ 2°C (3.6°F) and to pursue efforts to limit it to 1.5°C. Crucially, however, there is no mechanism that forces a country to set a specific target by a specific date. The only requirement is that each target should go beyond previously set targets. The urgent need to reduce carbon emissions has inspired millions of people, many of them young and completely new to politics, to protest on the streets as it becomes clear that traditional politics has failed. Sam Vincent reports.