ON Friday I went to my first climate strike.

I wanted to go because people are acting as if we have another planet to go to – which we don’t. The amount of plastic in the ocean is just outrageous. In 2050 there will be more plastic in the sea than fish, unless we do something about it.

I made my sign the night before with my dad. But before I made it I read a bit about Greta Thunberg. At first I wanted my sign to say “THERE IS NO PLANET B” but after reading about Greta Thunberg I wanted my sign to use her iconic quote “HOW DARE YOU!”

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So on the day of the climate strike, my friends and I got the bus into Glasgow city centre. We met up with some of my other friends who got the train. It was raining really heavily but that didn’t really bother us. We arrived early so we took shelter in a shop. The strike was at the Buchanan Street steps so we weren’t far away. At about 10.55am we started to walk to the steps and took out our signs and banners.

Around that time the rain was very heavy. A few of my friends brought umbrellas so we stood under them. The strike started and we started chanting “What do we want? Climate justice. When do we want it? NOW!”

The atmosphere was amazing. There were children of all ages, and some parents with babies as well. People started talking on the microphone and it was really inspirational. My favourite part was when someone got up and sang a song on their guitar.

At the strike I learned how important it is for people all around the world to fight for our planet because we don’t have another one to go too. Greta Thunberg has changed the world. I really admire her. Drive less, use fewer lights; these are all little things that we can do to help prevent climate change.

Innocent people and animals are dying around the globe. The people and animals of Australia are suffering from the loss of homes and lives. This is our fault due to global warming. Polar bear are losing their habitats. Antarctica is melting. Help save our only planet!

Genevieve Mearns

COP26 is beginning to feel like a huge stick with which to beat the Scottish Government.

By repeatedly threatening to remove the conference from Glasgow (scoping London venues) coupled with Johnson’s verminous contempt for all things SNP and Scottish in general, it is hard to believe that he will allow the conference in Glasgow to succeed.

The Scottish Government, as we might expect, will use the event to promote Scotland with its ambitious climate targets, however I believe we can expect that Johnson will continue to do everything he can to thwart that agenda.

As we have witnessed in his recent Cabinet reshuffle, Johnson will countenance no challenge to his premiership. Success is no protection (Julian Smith being a case in point). The “Johnson” government alone must call the shots or he is just not interested.

That said, in Glasgow he does have the perfect scapegoat sitting in the wings. Success, and his government claims the credit. Less so, and the spin will be that a difficult, non-compliant Scottish Government is to blame. In the end that might just tip the balance in favour of the Glasgow venue, given that planning for the event is already being reported as less than stellar.

However, putting Johnson aside, there surely is an even greater threat to the Glasgow conference: Covid19.

It may be that the world’s best efforts to confine the spread of this coronavirus prove insufficient and a worldwide epidemic ensues. In these circumstances it’s hard to see the conference taking place at all, regardless of the venue.

COP26 would be an enormous and important boost to the Glasgow economy, but that said perhaps now is the time for a major rethink. Why would a climate change conference require delegates to get into their CO2 spewing aircrafts to attend? The message seems mixed at best. Surely the greatest contribution Glasgow can make to our climate crisis and COP26 is not to physically host it at all, and move the entire conference to where it should be – online!

A worldwide online conference requiring minimal delegate travel would truly acknowledge the threat to humanity that climate change poses to us all. With all the communication technologies available today and the ability to stream online, surely in 2020 the time has come to make the change.

Glasgow would lose out, for sure, but the virtual legacy of Glasgow COP26 might just be groundbreaking, despite Johnson.

I Easton

IN light of the recent floodings that have taken place within two weeks of each other in the UK, I feel it is high time for the government to act decisively and build the flood defences which are urgently needed in vulnerable areas. These poor people are being flooded over and over again, resulting in awful stress and anxiety and many people cannot now get flood insurance.

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It is a great pity Boris Johnson gave the go-ahead for HS2, the £106 billion-plus could have been better spent. Instead of wanting his vanity project of building a bridge between Scotland and Ireland and having a fleet of electric buses in London, this money should be prioritised to prevent flooding in the future, which will be a regular occurrence with the onset of climate change. Johnson has now got his “Brexit done”’ time to concentrate on the wellbeing of all in the UK, not just his favoured few.

Susan Rowberry