Thousands of young people marched through the streets of Glasgow on Friday to protest a lack of climate action with a clear message to negotiators at the COP26 summit: “If not now, when?”
Two days of demonstrations are planned to highlight the disconnect between the glacial pace of emissions reductions and the climate emergency already swamping countries across the world.
Large crowds organised by the Fridays for Future global strike movement began marching through Glasgow city centre, with high-profile campaigners Greta Thunberg and Vanessa Nakate expected to address the masses.
Onlookers lined the streets and hung out of windows to watch the stream of protestors, who held banners reading “No Planet B” and “Climate Action Now”.
“I’m here because the world leaders are deciding the fate of our future and the present of people that have already been impacted by climate crisis,” said 18-year-old Valentina Ruas. “We won’t accept anything that isn’t real climate policy centred on climate justice.”
Sixteen-year-old Beth Donaldson said young people were fed up with hollow promises from leaders.
“We see on the TV all these political leaders saying they’re going to take action but we never see what action they’re actually going to take,” she said.
School children were out in force, with some schools allowing pupils to skip lessons to see the march and one young green warrior holding a placard that read: “Climate change is worse than homework”.