ABOUT 200 school students, parents and supporters at Mornington joined others across Australia in the first national school strike since COVID-19, Friday 21 May.
Meeting at Mornington Park they demanded the federal government stop financing gas and coal projects, and instead invest in clean, renewable energy, secure jobs and “implement First Nations’ solutions to protect Country”.
The strike was organised by the School Strike 4 Climate network to push the federal government to protect climate, land and water, and create new jobs by growing Australia’s renewable energy sector and “stop throwing money at gas”.
Speakers included year 6 students Adele, from Mount Martha Primary, and Signe, from Toorak College, year 7 students Leroy and Brett, from Woodleigh, and Dr Jacqui Salter from Mornington Peninsula Shire.
An Acknowledgement of Country was delivered by year 6 student Sarah, from Sandringham East Primary.
Adele, 11, said: “After COVID -19 the government is promoting a ‘gas-led recovery’ supporting these industries to get them back up and running after the pandemic. We protest that the money they give to the gas and coal should be invested in renewables which provide more jobs and a better planet.”
Signe, also 11, said: “Spending on renewables actually provides more jobs than the gas and coal industries, which is appalling, because that is the government’s excuse for keeping them alive.”
Groups attending included XR Mornington Peninsula, Mornington Peninsula Climate Action Network, Voices of Mornington Peninsula, Peninsula Rail Link and Save Arthurs Seat.