RIGHT on cue, at 1pm yesterday the heavens opened above the hundreds of students and supporters assembled in the Grafton CBD to take part in the global School Strike for Climate Action movement.

Ah, it serves them right, chorus the naysayers. They should be in school so they can get a job.

While I can't say my Higher School Certificate ever actually saw the light of day on the job interview table, I can't help but notice with my overly judgemental eye that the majority of the youngsters I observed participating in the protest were articulate, engaged and invested in their own futures.

These are the kids who are fed up with "intelligent" adults failing to make intelligent decisions. I don't reckon I saw many future dole bludgers. These are the kids who will one day be in leadership positions responsible for cleaning up the mess left before them.

But hey, that's just my cursory judgment - and who am I to judge?

 

School Strike 4 Climate in Grafton 20/09/19
School Strike 4 Climate in Grafton 20/09/19 Tim Jarrett

So what's all this rambling about climate change? What are you talking about? It's raining, for Christ's sake.

For the record, the light shower failed to register a drop in the Bureau of Meteorology's rain gauges at Grafton Airport and the Trenayr Ag Station, leaving this month's total so far languishing at 3.6mm, well below the September average of 41.2mm.

But climate change is about more than drought and lack of rain. It's about fewer of these moderate showers we were blessed with yesterday, replaced by longer dry periods, more intense wet periods, and generally more extreme weather events occurring more frequently all over the globe.

The world is a closed, interconnected system. Australian droughts are not exclusively caused by Australian habits. US hurricanes are not the direct result of US polluters.

Changes in global weather patterns are a culmination of the habits of everyone everywhere and if we keep putting our heads in the sand it will only exacerbate the issue.

School Strike 4 Climate in Grafton 20/09/19
School Strike 4 Climate in Grafton 20/09/19 Tim Jarrett

As it turned out, the shower was short-lived and failed to rain on the parade of those who marched to Market Square.

Among the peaceful and rather joyous group, people carried placards with messages such as "respect existence or expect resistance" and "the greatest threat to our plant is the belief that someone else will save us".

 

School Strike 4 Climate in Grafton 20/09/19
School Strike 4 Climate in Grafton 20/09/19 Tim Jarrett

Full respect to those who put their studies to one side for a moment to voice their concerns about a grave issue that worries them deeply.

I hear you. It's nothing new. I felt the same way about global warming when I was your age in the 1990s. We knew about it then. And yes, far too little has been done since.

Remember what you did yesterday. Carry it with you. Make a difference. In you we have hope.

After all, it's not rocket science, it's climate science.

YOUR SAY: Climate Strike: We caught up with Clarence Valley climate strike protestors
YOUR SAY: Climate Strike: We caught up with Clarence Valley climate strike protestors