Fridays for Future is an international youth-run climate justice organization originally founded in response to a series of school walk-outs conducted by Swedish student and activist Greta Thunberg as a climate justice call-to-action.
A chapter in Sacramento was founded by 14-year-old activist Supriya Patel, who is one of many youth residents protesting governmental handling of climate change.
“I’ve always been passionate about the climate crisis. This is partly because I’m 14,” writes Patel in a recent Sacramento Bee opinion article. “As a young person, I’m acutely aware that the climate crisis threatens my future. But it’s also because as a lifelong Sacramento resident, I’ve grown up seeing the effects of the climate crisis.”
Presently, Fridays of Future Sacramento is working to have a climate emergency declared in Sacramento County and to have the county commit to achieving zero carbon emissions, or ‘carbon neutrality’ by 2030.
“Under the current plan for Sacramento, however, carbon emissions have only increased and that’s why we feel the need to dedicate it as a climate emergency in Sacramento County,” says Grace, a member of Fridays for Future Sacramento. “Under a climate emergency declaration, it would be given more priority and reaching carbon neutrality by 2030 would be given more priority than currently.”
Additionally, Fridays for Future held a banner drop demonstration outside of the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors Offices on September 25 as part of a global climate action, and have future plans for ‘COVID-friendly’ in-person demonstrations.
“I’ve had people tell me [achieving carbon neutrality by 2030 is] too lofty but we actually have already been researching this, there’s already a [city plan] out with their nine [focus areas] to become carbon zero,” says Fridays for Future Sacramento member Jed. “So they’ve been doing some research and they have a plan, but they actually aren’t going to put it into use unless we pressure them into it, so that’s what our goal is.”
“I would remind anybody that might be reading this or listening to this that it is extremely important that there is a climate emergency declaration,” adds Grace, “because climate change has been treated, recently, as kind of a lesser problem among other political problems or seen as sort of an avenue to boost political views.”
“In reality it’s not related to politics – it’s more of a human crisis kind of issue, and everybody should be worried about reaching carbon neutrality by 2030 because it is an absolute necessity.”