An array of brightly colored signs accompanied by thousands of determined faces lined city sidewalks. Repetitive chants echoed against buildings as young adults across the globe rallied together with only one thought on their minds: the future of the planet they call home.
On Sept. 20, students and activists participated in a global climate strike in the hope of bringing attention to the climate crisis and inspiring adults in power to take action. Occurring just three days before the UN Climate Summit in New York City, the climate strike provided a forum for environmental activists to voice their demands regarding climate change and its impact on the environment.
“I think we all need to be a lot more self-aware. There is so much more that we, as individuals, could be doing to reverse the effects of climate change,” junior Jacob Bandy said. “While I do not think a climate strike is completely effective on its own, I do know it is going to help spread awareness.”
Many students at West Henderson believe that the school should have held a climate strike of its own, similar to the one held by students at Asheville High School.
“I definitely think West should be hosting its own climate strike,” sophomore Josie Rodriguez said. “As long as everything stays peaceful, events like this one have the potential to get our point across.”
However, according to some students, climate strikes are not an appropriate use of time and resources.
“In my opinion, a climate strike is not the best way to handle the situation,” sophomore Mira Nech said. “We need to be taking more action, not just standing around outside holding signs.”
In addition to participating in planned events, like the global climate strike, Rodriguez said she believes that students can be doing much more on their own to help reverse the effects of climate change.
“Everyone should be doing their part,” Rodriguez said. “This can be anything from using reusable containers to recycling and using green energy. I believe we can start to reverse the effects of climate change by incorporating small changes, like these ones, into our everyday lives.”
Although the event was originally planned to be a one-time strike, it has evolved into a movement called “Fridays For Future,” founded by Swedish activist Greta Thunberg, 15. According to fridaysforfuture.org, Thunberg intends to strike every Friday until the Swedish government aligns their climate legislation with the Paris agreement.
Freshman Aislin Eberhart said she was going to try to bring the foreign movement to a local venue.
“I’m currently trying to organize a climate strike in Hendersonville sometime in October,” Eberhart said. “I also plan to continue spreading awareness through social media. We’re all so connected through the internet, so I really think social media is the best way to bring attention to such a pressing issue, like this one.”
By: Marissa Detwiler, Feature Writer