Along with a large number of protests that were based on political or economical aspects from Asia to Latin America, climate protests also hit the streets and squares around the world, thanks particularly to the Fridays For Future movement.
Climate protests were held in streets and squares around the world in 2019 demanding that world leaders address the threat of global warming, including reducing greenhouse gas emissions, with Swedish teenager Greta Thunberg spearheading a global activist movement by launching a wave of school walkouts to demand action.
The following are the major climate change protests, strikes and events that took place in 2019:
- 16-year-old student Saoi O'Connor starts the first climate strike alone in Cork, Ireland.
- More than 10,000 students from Belgium’s climate movement “Youth for Climate” attend march demanding better protection of the globe’s climate.
- Climate protest is held in Nantes, which is the first school strike for climate in France.
- First U.K.-wide "Youth Strike 4 Climate" demonstration is held in 60 locations with the participation of 15,000 protesters.
- Thousands of students march in Belgium's capital Brussels to protest the government's climate policies and call for action on climate change. Swedish teen activist Greta Thunberg also attends the strike after addressing a plenary session of the European Economic and Social Committee.
- Hundreds of people, mostly students, gather in Reykjavik, Iceland to raise awareness on climate change in the country’s first climate strike.
- Thousands of students rally for the climate in the first widespread school strike in Norway.
- Youth climate activist Arshak Makichyan launches first protest, picketing alone in Moscow’s Pushkin Square.
- Students in the Czech capital Prague take to the streets demanding that politicians act urgently in order to prevent further global warming and climate change.
- Students in Kenya march to the edge of Karura Forest in Nairobi to demand action on climate change.
- Nearly 50,000 protesters attend demonstrations held across Switzerland organized by environmentalist movements including Greenpeace and Swiss Youth for Climate.
- Tens of thousands of young people and children take to main streets and squares across the U.K. to protest government policies and urge action to tackle global climate change. The rallies come after a recent UN report warned that limiting global temperature rises to 1.5 Celsius above pre-industrial levels, beyond which climate impacts become increasingly severe, requires unprecedented action, including cutting global carbon dioxide emissions by almost half within 12 years.
- Thousands of climate change activists of global environmental movement Extinction Rebellion block main roads in London in a bid to protest government inaction over rising global climate and ecological crisis. The protesters block Waterloo Bridge, one of the main passages across the River Thames, under heavy police presence.
- Around a dozen environmentalist protesters converge on London’s financial nerve center, urging the government to declare a climate emergency. They glue themselves together in a line, blocking two entrances to the London Stock Exchange as it opened for trading.
- Thousands of students from hundreds of schools across the U.S. hold several rallies and marches in various places, including Boston, Chicago, Houston, New York City and Philadelphia.
- More than 500 students rally in the Swiss city of Kreuzlingen and march to the German city of Konstanz as part of climate action protests.
- Hundreds of Extinction Rebellion protesters stage a die-in demonstration in Melbourne, Australia's second-most populous city.
- Some 1,500 students go on a climate strike in the Dutch city of Utrecht, with a group of over 200 teachers called Teachers for Climate supporting them in an open letter.
- Climate activist Greta Thunberg arrives in New York after 15-day journey sailing across the Atlantic. The 16-year-old Swedish activist travels from the English coastline on a zero-carbon yacht with solar panels and underwater turbines to generate electricity.
- A group of environmental activists suspend themselves from a bridge in the U.S. city of Houston to protest the use of fossil fuels ahead of a Democratic 2020 presidential debate.
- Greta Thunberg rallies hundreds of activists at the White House demanding U.S. action.
- Millions of people around the world gather for the first leg of the "Global Climate Strike" in which more than 2,000 scientists from 40 countries pledge to support the strikes. Greta Thunberg delivers a speech in New York, where around 250,000 protesters take part in the demonstration.
- The second wave of the global climate strike protests take place, with an estimated two million people taking part in more than 2,400 protests. In the Canadian city of Montreal, where Greta Thunberg speaks, school board cancels classes for 114,000 of its students. Celebrities such as Leonardo DiCaprio, Keith Richards, Mick Jagger and Chris Hemsworth support the strike on social media.
- International environmental organization 350.org announces that during the global climate strikes, over 7.6 million people held demonstrations in streets and squares -- almost equal to the 2003 anti-Iraq war protest, making it one of the biggest global demonstrations in history. More than 6,100 events are held in 185 countries with the support of 73 trade unions, 820 civil society organizations, 3,000 companies and 8,500 websites and Italy, Germany, Canada, the U.S. and Spain were the five countries where most people attended.
- Extinction Rebellion group blocks bridges in various countries including Canada, the U.K., India, Europe and Australia.
- Greenpeace activists from the Netherlands, Germany and Denmark board two oil platforms in Shell field in a peaceful protest against plans by the company to leave parts of old oil structures with 11,000 tons of oil in the North Sea.
- A recently discovered beetle species is named ''Nelloptodes gretae'' in honor of young climate activist Greta Thunberg, announces the National History Museum in London.
- Greta Thunberg declines Nordic Council’s 2019 environmental award, saying climate movement does not need awards.
- "Climate strike" is declared "Word of the Year" for 2019 by the Scotland-based Collins dictionary. Climate strikes have become so frequent in large parts of the world that its usage has increased a hundredfold in 2019, says the dictionary.
- Thousands of people around the world take part in rallies as part of Global Day for Climate Action demanding more action on climate change and urge world leaders to frame solutions at a UN conference the following week.
- After a 21-day transatlantic journey on a catamaran, Thunberg touches ground in Lisbon, Portugal as she makes her way to the COP25 UN climate summit in Madrid.
- Major protest is held in Madrid as UN leaders and decision-makers congregate in the Spanish capital for the COP25 UN climate summit.
- U.S-based Time magazine announces Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg as the 2019 Person Of The Year.
- Greenpeace activists protest new action plans of European countries for climate change ahead of EU leaders’ summit. The protesters unfurl a huge banner saying "climate emergency" and set off smoke flares from behind a banner in mock fire at EU’s new headquarters in Brussels.
- Climate protesters occupy part of Schiphol Airport in the Netherlands capital Amsterdam where police warn Greenpeace and Extinction Rebellion group members to end their occupation before declaring an emergency situation and arresting 26 protesters.
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