PUHI — Kauai’s youth are adding their mana‘o to the Global Climate Strike on Friday, Sept. 20 in front of Kauai Community College.
They’ll be joining kids and young adults all over the world who are ditching class to send the message to politicians at every level of government to take action on the climate crisis.
Started by environmental activist Greta Thunberg, the Climate Strike has been dubbed “a wake-up call to our own generation” by organizers. Demands include movement on the transition to 100% clean energy and an immediate halt to burning fossil fuels.
On Kauai, organizers say they’re using the Climate Strike as a gathering point for community, as well as sending that climate action message to the county and Mayor Derek S.K. Kawakami.
“It’s going to bring people together,” said Laurel Brier, one of the Kauai organizers of the event. “Besides sign-waving, we’ll have youth who will be sharing their perspectives and personal impacts, and how to turn despair into action.”
Sign waving starts at 1 p.m. at the front gate of KCC, and speakers follow until 3 p.m. Then, participants will embark on a four-mile, round-trip bike ride from KCC to Kawakami’s office.
“We want a resiliency plan and for the mayor to have a disaster plan, and I think he’s on board,” Brier said Thursday. “So we’re asking for that, and then a commitment to action, asking people to look at the Aloha+Challenge targets.”
The Aloha+Challenge is an initiative that encourages Kauai community members to pledge to take action in promoting a more sustainable, clean and environmentally conscious Kauai.
Some of the actions include switching to LED bulbs, committing to reducing and reusing materials ahead of recycling, eating and buying local produce, upgrading appliances and buying or leasing electric vehicles.
At the Climate Strike, Brier said the emphasis is also on the importance of community.
“One of the key things this year is (a focus on) the importance of community,” Brier said. “It’s important to know your neighbors, especially in times of catastrophe.”
Before the 1 p.m. sign-waving event, students will be conducting a roadside cleanup from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Meet at the KCC One Stop Center and bring gloves and reusable water bottles, and wear bright shirts.
Jessica Else, staff writer, can be reached at 245-0452 or email@example.com.
This story was edited to remove a paragraph that said the mayor would be delivering a declaration.