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Indonesian Youths on Board the Global Action on Climate Emergency

Youths gather for the Asia Climate Leadership Camp 2019 organised by 350.org. Credit: AC Diamatatac via 350.0rg Flickr.

September 20, 2019

Hundreds of youths will take to the streets in Jakarta to take the lead in a Pause for Climate action that is part of the global Climate Strike to demand the declaration of a state of climate emergency and push for concrete actions to address this crisis. This action will be held on September 20, 2019, three days ahead of the UN Climate Change Summit in New York. The global climate strike will continue until September 27, 2019.

“Our earth is in the process of heading towards a mass extinction due to the climate crisis. Forest and ground fires, extreme weather, drought, harvest failures, are only a few of the impacts of the climate crisis that has been felt by our country. Scientists have calculated that our earth would not last more than 11 years before it reaches the ‘climate tipping point,’” said Alexandra Karyn, a teacher at Erudio Indonesia school and also an initiator of the Pause for Climate action in Indonesia.

“We want to urge all politicians, companies and the public to stop being indifferent and to take serious action to make sure that there will be life for the next generations,” she added.

The youths, including students, will lead hundreds of adults who will take a ‘day off’ from work to participate in a march in support of the Pause for Climate action, walking from the Cut Mutia Mosque to City Hall and later continuing towards Taman Aspirasi where the march will end.

A campaign video produced by 350.org to call on youths to take leadership in pushing governments to take serious action on tackling climate crisis. Credit: 350.org

A number of students from Indonesian Muslim boarding schools, or pesantren, will also take part in the action. “To repel the climate crisis, we need the involvement of all, from all circles. We can learn from the Miskat al-Anwar Pesantren in Bogor that has initiated an eco-based pesantren. There is also the Attarbiyatul Wathoniyah (PATWA) Pesantren in Cirebon which has shown concrete climate actions by using renewable energy as source of electricity for their mosque,” commented Mutia from Enter Nusantara, a non-profit organisation that advocates the development and implementation of renewables.

“We want climate crisis to become the topic of daily conversation. Children, youths and the next generations are in the center of this problem and it is us who will bear the brunt of the impacts. Therefore, we have decided to take an active role in voicing and pressuring the government, to immediately declare a state of climate emergency in Indonesia,” said Novita Indri, a university students who is a member of the community of Climate Rangers Jakarta.

The participants of the Pause for Climate action are making the following demands:

▪ The government listen to scientists and declare a state of Climate Crisis.

▪ The government raises its glasshouse gas emission reduction ambitions as high as possible and implement it firmly, consistently and urgently.

The participants will also express their concerns about the scarcity of educational materials on the ecological crisis for school students. The various communities coming from a broad range of backgrounds will also call on religious leaders to be more active in spreading the principles of respect for the environment and so that the public widely reject practices that lead to the air pollution in Jakarta and other big cities.

The Pause for Climate action will also be held in 14 other Indonesian cities —  Aceh, Medan, Bengkulu, Pekanbaru, Palembang, Bandung, Semarang, Yogyakarta, Surabaya, Malang, Bali, Palu, Palangkaraya, and Kupang. Globally, the Climate Strike will take place in 150 countries and involve millions of people. It is said that this will be the biggest global action so far in overcoming the climate crisis.

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