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Politics & Government

Youth Push For Climate Action In Oregon, D.C., and Globally

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Rachael McDonald
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On Friday, people around the world plan to march and rally to call for action on climate change. There are Global Climate Strikes planned in Eugene, Corvallis, Cottage Grove and other Oregon cities. 

University of Oregon Student Eloise Parish Mueller is helping to organize the Eugene event. She says she’s felt growing frustration as she sees the climate crisis grow more urgent and doesn’t see enough action from political leaders.

“I eventually realized that this is what I need to do with my life. We have to address this and if those who already have the power aren’t going to step up and do that, the rest of us need to encourage them to and take it into our own hands.”

The youth driven global climate strike was inspired by Swedish teen activist Greta Thunberg who is in the states to be at next week’s UN Climate Action Summit.

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Credit Our Children's Trust
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Kelsey Juliana speaks at a press conference Wednesday in front of the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C.

Meanwhile, the young people who are suing the federal government over climate change are in Washington D.C. this week pushing Congress to take action to address the climate crisis.

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Credit Our Children's Trust
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Kelsey Juliana and other plaintiffs who are suing the government over climate change meets Representative Alexandria Occasio-Cortez.

They held a press conference in front of the Supreme Court Wednesday with members of Oregon’s congressional delegation.

Kelsey Juliana of Eugene is the named plaintiff in the case against the government, which was filed when she was 18 years old. Now she’s 23.

“We are talking about our lives. We are asking those individuals who seem to be putting guns to the foreheads of all youth to not only not pull the trigger but remove your weapon. We are asking for you to understand what is at stake.”

Juliana says what’s at stake is the security of future generations. The climate lawsuit plaintiffs were joined by Greta Thunberg when they met with lawmakers this week. They plan to take part in Friday’s Global climate strike.

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Credit Our Children's Trust
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Greta Thunberg speaks to the Senate Climate Change Task Force as Jacob Liebel (far right) and Levi Draheim (center) snap their fingers in support

Students from South Eugene and Churchill high schools are planning to walk out of class Friday to join the rally. Events start at noon in Eugene’s Free Speech Plaza with a Presidential Puppet Pageant. The Sunrise Eugene Rally is at 1 p.m. It's followed by a Climate Justice Panel in Harris Hall.  

In Corvallis, the Climate Strike events start at 12:15 at Corvallis High School.

In Cottage Grove, the Climate Strike events start at 10 a.m. at Bohemia Park.

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