Worldwide students’ climate strike today


This video says about itself:

School strikes were held across Australia today, 15 March 2019, but it was the students, not the teachers, leading the charge. The strikes were held to demand more meaningful climate action from the government; something the organising students believe to be truly lacking.

In Sydney, thousands of students congregated at Town Hall Square to demand more action on the world’s climate change disaster. Students then marched to Hyde Park through the city streets, many of which were closed down for the march. It’s the second nationwide strike since November 2018 and there’s no sign of them stopping anytime soon.

Australia joins 111 other countries who have taken up the charge in the name of climate action. Sydney’s rally organiser, Jean Hinchliffe told Student Edge at November’s march that students would keep striking and making their voices heard until the government takes real action to curb the effects of climate change. “We’re definitely not stopping here; there’s a lot to organise from here,” Jean said.

This video, from Gisborne, in New Zealand, is called School Strike for Climate.

This video from France today is called LIVE: Students call for massive strike in Paris against climate change.

This video is called Fridays For Future: Live 15 March 2019 Climate Strike From Stockholm Sweden.

This video from Wales, where the weather was bad, is called Youth Climate Strike Swansea March 15th 2019.

This tweet from the Netherlands is about striking pro-climate students in Maastricht city today.

A new study published in Ecology Letters is using observations made by Henry David Thoreau — 19th-century American naturalist, social reformer, and philosopher — to explore the effects of climate change on tree leaf-out and, as a result, the emergence of spring wildflowers: here.

Striking pro-climate students march in Amsterdam


This 14 March 2019 video shows striking pro-climate students marching in Amsterdam, the Netherlands today.

Pro-climate march in Amsterdam, 14 March 2019, ANP photo

One of the signs on this photo of the march says, translated: If the climate would be money, then the world would have been saved already.

One of the students interviewed by the Dutch NOS TV said that governments spend billions on bailing out banks, while doing little against climate change.

This video shows the march.

Translated from NOS TV today:

Thousands of high school students were in Amsterdam this afternoon to demonstrate for a better climate policy. They marched from the Dam square to the Museumplein square. …

The government’s climate plans were calculated yesterday and the most important conclusion was that it would be difficult to achieve the CO2 reduction targets. In the afternoon the government made changes, announcing, eg, a CO2 tax for corporations.

Which the right-wing government had refused earlier, as they love corporations and their profits.

“Take action now”

The students are not reassured that the plans will turn out well. “It is important that we have a good future, that the earth does not get warmer”, says a student with a sign Make Earth Cool Again on it. Another student points out that Prime Minister Rutte has not said how high the CO2 tax will be. “It is important that it becomes enough, we protest to achieve that.” …

Another girl on strike interviewed by the NOS said that corporations may try to dodge the CO2 tax.

This tweet is about the fat cats of Shell corporation who cause much of the climate change.

Many students say that they have received permission from their schools to go to the demonstration. …

The students announced that they would once again march on 24 May during a European day of action.

And on 25 April, there will be a students’ pro-climate strike as well; as this tweet shows.

In Belgium, some schools oblige their pupils to join the climate march tomorrow. It then counts as extracurricular activity.

There will be a big march in Brussels and more marches in 24 other Belgian cities and towns tomorrow.

This tweet is from Scotland.

And this one is from Kenya.

French state faces landmark lawsuit over climate inaction: here.

Students strike for climate, today, tomorrow


This 22 January 2019 video is about a big Youth for Climate demonstration of striking students in Brussels, Belgium.

Meanwhile, in the Netherlands, Facebook corporation has censored (deleted) the Instagram account of Youth for Climate in the Netherlands.

Their march of striking students, starting today at 1pm at the Dam square in Amsterdam, will go ahead.

This tweet says that on 25 April, there will be another Dutch students’ pro-climate strike.

By Ceren Sagir in Britain:

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Students ‘alarmed’ by government’s lack of action on climate change

School students across Britain to strike again on Friday to demand the government acts to prevent environmental devastation

… More than 100 towns and cities across the country will take part in the action on Friday to urge the government to declare a climate emergency.

Students from the Youth Strike 4 Climate movement during a climate change protest on Parliament Square in Westminster, London, England last month

By Bryan Dyne in the USA:

The Youth Climate Strike and the fight against global warming

14 March 2019

Hundreds of thousands of students and young people are expected to take part this Friday in a worldwide Youth Climate Strike to protest the inaction of governments on the issue of climate change. That the international demonstration has evoked a broad response is an indication of both the serious nature of the ecological crisis and the radicalization of youth all over the world.

The strike is the culmination of a series of international protests that began last August after 15-year-old Greta Thunberg began picketing the Swedish parliament every Friday. Since then, students and youth, some as young as 12,

or: as young as ten

have organized weekly walk outs, protests and strikes in many parts of the world. Friday’s demonstrations, which will be the largest to date, will take place in more than 1,200 cities in at least 92 countries across six continents—including in Australia, Brazil, China,Great Britain, India, Iran, Italy, the Philippines, Portugal, Russia, Somalia, Sweden and the United States.

The protests have expanded amidst a series of reports indicating that global warming is accelerating, and that the destruction already caused by climate change from hurricanes, heat waves, droughts and other extreme weather events will become qualitatively more catastrophic as early as 2040. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has warned that the measures taken by governments to halt global warming are so much empty bluster. It estimates the potential economic damage from unabated climate change to be between $54 and $69 trillion worldwide.

Perhaps the most tragic consequence of global warming is the creation of so-called “climate refugees”, those forced to permanently flee their homes as a result of climate change-related disasters. The United Nations estimates that 210 million people worldwide have been displaced since 2008, and that up to one billion will be displaced by 2050.

The student strikes reflect the politicization and left-ward trajectory of a generation that has come of age in a world of unprecedented social inequality, ongoing environmental degradation, growing state repression and expanding imperialist wars.

Polls consistently show a left-ward movement of young people and growing support for and interest in socialism. Central to the perspective of genuine socialism is the understanding that there is not a single social problem confronting humanity—from climate change, to poverty and unemployment, to authoritarianism and war—that can be resolved except through the political mobilization of the international working class in a revolutionary movement to overturn capitalism and establish a society based on social need, not private profit.

The objective basis for such a revolutionary movement is beginning to emerge in the growth of the class struggle internationally, beginning in 2018 and escalating this year.

Mass protests and strikes in the past several weeks have paralyzed the Algerian government. Protests in Belgium, France, Germany, Portugal and Sudan have erupted against pro-business austerity and the victimization of refugees. Workers in different parts of Iran have been regularly striking for 15 months. Tens of thousands of autoworkers in Mexico have been on strike since January, and tens of thousands of teachers in the United States have gone on strike this year … . Students themselves are joining in these struggles, particularly in support of teachers and to defend public education.

It is to the working class that young people must turn, not to the corporate politicians and government institutions. …

The track record of every international agreement and climate summit shows that none of them are capable of solving the crisis posed by climate change. They are ultimately dominated by the major corporations, which are responsible for global warming in the first place. Any measures that are adopted, such as carbon emissions trading, are thinly veiled mechanisms for these companies to continue business as usual—and even turn the poisoning of the environment into a new source of speculative profit.

The urgent measures needed to address climate change require a major reorganization of economic life on a global scale. The framework of energy production has to be transitioned from one that uses fossil fuels to one that relies on renewable energy. This, in turn, requires an international effort, involving a massive influx of funding for infrastructure, the development of current technologies and the investigation of new ideas.

All such measures come into conflict with the nation-state system, the basic political framework of capitalism, which itself has become an intolerable brake on the development of the world economy. They also collide with the foundation of capitalist exploitation of the working class—private ownership of the means of production and production for profit. As long as a handful of billionaires dominate society, with every aspect of economic life geared to their personal enrichment, not a single social problem, including climate change, can be solved.

This makes the solution to climate change an inherently class question and a revolutionary question. It is the working class that will suffer the brunt of the impact of global warming. It is the working class that is objectively and increasingly defining itself as an international class. It is the working class whose social interests lie in the overthrow of capitalism and the abolition of private ownership of the means of production, which will open the way to the establishment of an economic system based on the satisfaction of human need, including a safe and healthy environment.

This is a Catalan tweet supporting the students’ pro-climate strike.

This is an Italian tweet about the students’ pro-climate strike.

Little owls in Switzerland, new study


This video from England says about itself:

Footage of a little owl family filmed by David Plummer on the Knepp Wildlands, West Sussex in 2015.

From the University of Freiburg in Germany:

Little owls on the move

March 12, 2019

Summary: New study on an owl’s re-colonization of northern Switzerland.

The little owl, Athene noctua, is a small nocturnal owl and is classified as an endangered species on the German Red List. In recent years the existing population of little owls has successfully been stabilized in the south-west of Germany, and in some places numbers are even rising. In neighboring northern Switzerland on the other hand there is still no established population of little owls, even though habitat conditions seem suitable for the species. Now, a team of researchers headed by Severin Hauenstein from the Department of Biometry and Environmental Systems Analysis at the University of Freiburg has researched whether juvenile little owls from Germany could reach and re-colonize northern Switzerland. The scientists have published their results in the peer-reviewed journal Ecological Applications.

“It is difficult to predict how animals will disperse,” says Hauenstein. To explore the dispersal potential of little owls, he and his colleagues from the Swiss Ornithological Institute in Sempach, Switzerland, the German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research Halle-Jena-Leipzig (iDiv), the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research in Leipzig and the University of Regensburg have developed an individual-based computer model. Using simulations, the researchers are able to assess whether individuals from the currently expanding little owl populations in south-western Germany are able to migrate to suitable habitats in northern Switzerland. Intensive farming and a steady loss of habitat has caused virtual extinction of the little owl in Switzerland.

The movement-behavior parameters in the model were estimated using Bayesian statistical inference based on radio telemetry data of juvenile little owls. Amongst other things, the researchers were able to show plausible inter-individual and -sexual behavioral differences — female juvenile little owls tend to move more directionally and fly longer distances during the dispersal phase, while their male counterparts are characterized by a tendency to take longer rests, and show a greater attachment to suitable habitat.

Hauenstein explains that the findings indicate that the little owl‘s natural re-colonization of northern Switzerland is generally possible, however there are restrictions, “Fragmented urban areas in particular, such as those around the tri-border area near Basel, appear to limit the movement of juvenile little owls drastically. Besides that, little owls avoid forested areas because that is where their natural enemy, the tawny owl, can be found; they also avoid higher altitudes such as the Swiss Jura, the Black Forest and the Swabian Alb.” In the study, the scientists highlight existing but narrow dispersal corridors, for example the lower Aare valley or the Fricktal south-east of Basel. By improving the habitat for the birds there, e.g. by agricultural extensification and nest box provision, it may be possible to expedite the re-colonization of northern Switzerland by the little owl.