Inspired By 16-Year-Old Activist Greta, Thousands Rally in Europe Before UN Climate Summit
“The action needs to happen very soon”: Prince William on melting glaciers of the Hindu Kush Mountain Range in Pakistan and the Himalayan region
DESPARDES — Tens of thousands of protesters, primarily in Europe and Asia, hit the streets on Friday to make a fresh call for action against global warming, hoping to raise pressure on world leaders days before a UN climate summit.
Carrying signs that read “One planet, one fight” and “The sea is rising, so must we”, thousands flocked to Berlin’s Brandenburg Gate for the latest “Fridays for Future” protest inspired by 16-year-old activist Greta Thunberg.
“To change everything, we need everyone. Each and every one of us must participate in the climate resistance movement. We cannot just say we care; we must show it,” tweeted Thunberg.
According to the UN, Climate change is happening—the world is already 1.1°C warmer than it was at the onset of the industrial revolution, and it is already having a significant impact on the world, and on people’s lives. And if current trends persist, then global temperatures can be expected to rise by 3.4 to 3.9°C this century, which would bring wide-ranging and destructive climate impacts.
Madrid is the host city of next week’s 12-day COP25 conference, which aims to encourage governments to increase their commitments to cut emissions and combat climate change.
In total, about 630,000 people demonstrated across more than 500 cities in Germany, the Fridays for Future movement said. In Hamburg alone, some 30,000 mainly young people gathered and another 17,000 congregated in Munich to voice alarm at rising temperatures, police said.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge traveled to northern Pakistan for the third day of their royal tour in October where they walked around the tip of a glacier to see how it has retreated as a result of climate change.
Some 5600 glaciers are melting in the Himalayan region, and “the world must come together to address the global issue”, said Prince William.
“The action needs to happen very soon”.
Thunberg, meanwhile, was on a boat sailing across the Atlantic, but tweeted a photo of herself holding a sign that said “School strike for climate.” Rallies took place across Europe also, where during September’s wave of “climate strikes” organizers said some four million people filled city streets around the world.
South of the Climate Change rallies in Europe, Pakistan’s northern glaciers and those throughout the Hindu Kush and Himalaya region is a hot spot — some glaciers are melting at the rate of almost 10 meters a year. These glaciers are an important water store for 250 million people, and another 1.6 billion rely on rivers originating in the mountains, putting many communities at risk as global temperatures rise.
The region includes Kashmir considered the water tower of two neighboring countries India and Pakistan locked in a territorial dispute over the pristine valley.
Landlocked and now locked-down Kashmir –also considered a nuclear flashpoint and the world’s most militarized region — as well as the Hindu Kush Range in Pakistan close to Afghanistan, have suffered from severe flash flooding because of the melting glaciers, destroying buildings and farmland.