NGO raises awareness about climate change

Some of the young protesters who held a picket on Friday to call for government action against global warming.

The rain did not deter young people, among them members of Project 90 by 2030, who picketed outside the Isivivana Centre on Friday September 25, a global day of action to raise awareness about the threat of climate change.

Project 90 by 2030 is a social and environmental justice organisation pushing for a low-carbon future.

The protesters demanded government enforce laws that protect the environment from industry.

Protesters in other parts of Khayelitsha preached the same message.

Project 90 by 2030 co-ordinator Athenkosi Baba said they wanted the government to start implementing renewable energies and do away with coal and other fossil fuels.

They also wanted to teach people about the harm that the burning of rubbish did to the environment and to their own health, he said.

If people were better informed about global warming, they could change their behaviour, he said.

“This is the only planet that we have, and we need to look after it. We must teach the community about other sources of energy. We want to build these climate change activists so that they could go back to the community and advocate for change.

“We must teach them while they are still young so that they could educate their families.”

Mr Baba said township residents assumed climate change did not affect them, so awareness drives were vital to change that attitude.

Climate change was a human rights and social justice issue, he said.

One of the picketers, Amahle Beshu, 16, said not everyone understood the impact of pollution on the environment and that when she had joined the project she had been “clueless” about such matters.

Sisipho Booi shared Amahle’s sentiment and urged young people to learn more about climate change.